World Vision Urges Congress to Reauthorize Aids Relief Plan
Delay would cost lives of patients, orphans and vulnerable children.
Washington, D. C. (PRWEB) December 11, 2007
Voting to extend the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief is vital to keep from losing pace in the fight against HIV and AIDS in hard-hit nations, a World Vision advocate told U. S. senators at a hearing today.
The international Christian humanitarian agency World Vision strongly supports reauthorization of the United States Leadership Against HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Act of 2003. The law, which expires in Sept. 2008, funded the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) with a total commitment of more than $15 billion for AIDS prevention, treatment and care. President George W. Bush is asking Congress to reauthorize PEPFAR and double that funding for the next five years.
“Congress must act on this legislation quickly to ensure continuation of the live-saving global AIDS programs it funds,” Princess Zulu, a Zambian AIDS educator and advocate with World Vision, told a hearing of the Senate Health, Education Labor and Pensions Committee today. “We also support the continued requirement that at least 10 percent of all resources in this Act are directed to the care of orphans and vulnerable children.”
AIDS has already orphaned 15 million children worldwide.
If signed into law, the increase would fully fund the bilateral AIDS programs administered by the U. S. State Department in 15 of the world’s most-affected countries.
World Vision, a Christian relief and development organization operating in nearly 100 countries, specializes in child-focused, community-based programs to alleviate the root causes of poverty and injustice. The agency began its work to stem the impact of HIV and AIDS two decades ago in Rakai, Uganda, the pandemic’s epicenter. World Vision now has AIDS prevention and care work in 60 countries.
“Congress must also ensure that adequate resources are provided so the United States can hold up its end of the bargain when all G8 leaders promised in 2005 to provide universal access to AIDS treatment, prevention, and care by 2010,” Zulu told lawmakers including the committee chairman, Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts.
For more information or interviews, contact: Geraldine Ryerson-Cruz at 202.615.2608
World Vision is a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to working with children, families and their communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. We serve all people, regardless of religion, race, ethnicity or gender. For more information, please visit www. worldvision. org
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