Alwaleed Philanthropies Joins the END Fund to Accelerate the End of Neglected Tropical Diseases
Alwaleed Philanthropies (AP), chaired by HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, announces its new collaboration with the END Fund today to help end the neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) that affect over 1.6 billion people.
Over the next three years (2017 – 2019), Alwaleed Philanthropies will provide US$3 million to support the END Fund’s activities in controlling and eliminating neglected tropical diseases globally, with an emphasis on Africa and the Middle East.
The announcement comes as part of a high-level convening hosted by the END Fund in Davos to showcase how the private sector is uniquely contributing to improving economic productivity and overall health in developing countries through investing in NTD control and elimination programs. Tsitsi Masiyiwa, Co-Founder of Higherlife Foundation, William I. Campbell, END Fund Chair, and other leaders from pharma, academia, and philanthropy join this convening which will ensure the NTD cause is represented at the highest level in a sanctioned side event at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting.
HRH Princess Lamia bint Majed AlSaud, Alwaleed Philanthropies Secretary General stated: “As philanthropists, it is critical that we make sure every dollar we invest in tackling disease, poverty and injustice delivers the greatest possible social return. At Alwaleed Philanthropies, we choose to support projects and partners that do the most good possible. This is why we are proud to partner with the END Fund in the fight to tackle the scourge of neglected tropical diseases, which affects over 1.6 billion people around the world.”
Trevor Mundel, President of Global Health for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation commented, “Supporting the control and elimination of NTDs has long been a clear choice for our foundation. NTDs have an outsized economic impact, disabling tens of millions in poor communities around the world and fuelling cycles of poverty. Combined with the drug donations from the private sector, investing in NTD programs is one of the most cost-effective ways to improve global health. We’re proud to support the END Fund and glad to see new players join in.”
Working in partnership with private actors, since its founding in 2012, the END Fund has raised over US$70 million and supported the treatment of over 100 million people at risk of NTDs and training of hundreds of thousands of health workers, teachers, and volunteers in NTD prevention, control and treatment strategies.
Ellen Agler, END Fund CEO and one of the hosts of the event, commented: “Targeting the end of the five most common neglected tropical diseases really is a ‘best buy’ in global health. The math makes sense for our strategic philanthropists whose business acumen means they automatically look for great returns on their investments. The END Fund appeals to both head and heart: The short-term transformation in individuals’ well-being after treatment is startling, but so too is the long-term impact on national economic development and poverty alleviation for millions.”
NTD efforts are also being backed by the largest-ever drug donation program, valued at US$4 billion annually with 5.5 billion tablets of NTD medicines donated by pharmaceutical companies. The business case is compelling: for every dollar invested in NTD control, at least $50 is returned in increased economic productivity over time. The efficacy and impact of NTD programs have been further improved in recent years. This has mostly been achieved through advances in big data and technological innovations, such as disease mapping systems and tools for prevention, diagnosis, and treatment.
For over 37 years, Alwaleed Philanthropies has supported and initiated projects in over 124 countries regardless of gender, race, or religion. We collaborate with a range of philanthropic, government, and educational organizations to combat poverty, empower women and youth, develop communities, provide disaster relief and create cultural understanding through education. Together, we can build bridges for a more compassionate, tolerant, and accepting world.
For more information about The END Fund, or to find out about getting involved in ending NTDs visit: http://www.end.org/