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Global Fund launches ‘Born Hiv Free’ campaign supported by Carla Bruni-Sarkozy

19 May 2010

Ambitious digital media campaign launched

Paris, 19 May 2010 – The Global Fund today launched the BORN HIV FREE campaign to mobilize public support for its work and for a world where no child is born with HIV by 2015. Originated and supported by Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, Global Fund Ambassador, this is one of the most ambitious campaigns of its kind. At its core is a series of creative films intended to inspire people to sign up online in support of The Global Fund’s mission.

“It is heartbreaking that over 400,000 babies are born with HIV every year even though we have the medical means and the expertise to prevent this,” says Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, The Global Fund’s Ambassador for Protecting Women and Children against AIDS. “I hope the BORN HIV FREE campaign will inspire millions of people to support The Global Fund so we can finally put an end to this terrible injustice.”

Carla Bruni-Sarkozy’s support for the BORN HIV FREE campaign follows a call in 2009 from UNAIDS head Michel Sidibé to virtually eliminate mother-to-child transmission by 2015. HIV-positive mothers can pass on HIV to their babies during pregnancy, child labor, delivery or by breast-feeding. The risk of transmission can be significantly reduced if they get access to prevention and treatment services.

“We can win this battle against AIDS if we get the funding we require,” says Professor Michel Kazatchkine, Executive Director of The Global Fund. “This campaign is intended to encourage people to sign up in support of The Global Fund and to show their leaders that there is strong public support to continue and increase funding for its mission.”

The campaign was conceived by French musician and producer Julien Civange at the request of Carla Bruni-Sarkozy, and co-produced with The Global Fund. Designed to work across various social and traditional media platforms, the campaign brings together several major companies who have joined up as official partners in support of The Global Fund: Google, JC Decaux, Jean-Paul Gaultier, MSN, Orange, Tiffany & Co. and YouTube which will be a major platform for the campaign.

“YouTube is proud to be a main platform for this creative and innovative campaign.” says Chad Hurley, YouTube CEO and co-founder. “This campaign will show governments that their citizens endorse this effort and by supporting the Global Fund and its ambassador Carla Bruni-Sarkozy we want to encourage fellow YouTube visitors to visit the Born HIV Free YouTube channel, watch and share its videos and sign up in support.”

The campaign will operate in several languages with the vivid and imaginative short animation films aiming to expand public awareness that an HIV-free generation is now truly possible within five years if governments continue funding the fight against HIV and AIDS. Nearly 100 media organizations are supporting the campaign.

The campaign films were produced by Oscar-winning creative team H5, as well as by Les Bonzoms for Paris Passion, with music by Amy Winehouse, TWA/MAP and NEXUS Productions. The films focus on the promise of life fulfilled for children who are protected from HIV. Actor and director Vincent Perez has directed a special video with Carla Bruni-Sarkozy to promote the campaign on YouTube. The animations will be distributed through various social and mass media platforms. They are supplemented with a film by the award-winning Swedish animator Jonas Odell showcasing the tremendous advances made in the fight against the three diseases since the inception of The Global Fund in 2002.

The BORN HIV FREE web site was designed and developed by red design, and the YouTube Channel was developed by type3. The campaign logo uses two ribbons to embody the overarching theme: a small red ribbon, to represent a child, enveloped by a larger grey ribbon, representing the love and care of a mother. Tiffany & Co. has created a collector’s item brooch of this logo and Jean-Paul Gaultier is producing a collector’s item tee-shirt.

Since its establishment in 2002, The Global Fund has approved proposals totaling US$ 19.4 billion making it the main contributor to the health–related Millennium Development Goals. If current progress rates are maintained, it is possible to ensure that virtually no children anywhere in the world are born with HIV by 2015.

A majority of The Global Fund’s resources come from donor governments. This year countries will pledge funding for the next three years (2011-2013) to fight the three diseases. On 5 October 2010, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will chair a meeting of donor countries in New York.

The BORN HIV FREE campaign will run until the key meeting in New York in order to mobilize public support for these decisions which will determine whether the battle to virtually eliminate mother to child transmission of the virus will be won or lost.