News & Stories

Carrying the Torch

21 February 2020

Peter Sands, Executive Director of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, has been selected as a torchbearer for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Torch Relay.

Sands joins other global health advocates and leaders who make a team named the Global Fund ― from Okinawa for a relay in Okinawa, Japan, on 2 May 2020. With the relay, the team aims to light the way for a world free from the burden of HIV, tuberculosis and malaria.

The other members of the team include:

  • Maurine Murenga, Executive Director, Lean on Me Foundation, Kenya
  • Jeffry Acaba, Programme Officer, APCASO, Phillipines
  • Erika Castellanos, Director of Programs, Global Action for Trans*Equality (GATE),
  • Noriyuki Ishiyama, Digital and Print Production Officer, Japan Center for International Exchange/Friends of the Global Fund, Japan
  • JOY, TV Personality and Stop TB Volunteer Ambassador, Japan
  • Zolelwa Sifumba, Community Service Medical Officer, St. Andrews Hospital, South Africa
  • Morimitsu Touma, Director, Yaeyama War Malaria Bereaved Family Association, Japan
  • Saw Winn Tun, Malaria Community Worker, Myanmar

The nine delegates from seven countries – most of them affected by HIV, TB or malaria – will carry the torch for everyone involved in the fight to end epidemics. Okinawa has a special connection to the Global Fund. Japan introduced infectious diseases to the agenda of the G8 Kyushu-Okinawa Summit in 2000, which paved the way for the Global Fund's establishment in 2002. Since then, Japan has been a strong supporter of the Global Fund and is its fifth largest contributor. With Japan’s support, the Global Fund partnership has saved 32 million lives round the world.


If you would like to receive our news releases, please write to

More News & Stories