Feature story

Micro-Contribution for Massive Good

04 March 2010

20100304_mg_200.jpg

An innovative fundraising movement is taking to the skies on Thursday, with the potential to raise millions of dollars for HIV and global health. UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé joined UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, former US President Bill Clinton, movie director Spike Lee and international recording artists Will.I.Am and David Guetta in New York to launch MASSIVEGOOD. This new fundraising tool will enable travellers to make a “micro-contribution” towards major global health causes every time they buy a plane ticket, reserve a hotel room or rent a car.

From this week, travellers in the United States can go to commercial travel websites like Travelocity and Accor Hotels and find MASSIVEGOOD. With one click they can contribute US$ 2 to fighting HIV, malaria and tuberculosis and to improving maternal and child health care in developing countries. With the global financial crisis tightening conventional funding, this new fundraising mechanism can help achieve universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support.

Innovative financing mechanisms such as MASSIVEGOOD are critical to keeping the four million on antiretroviral treatment alive.

Michel Sidibé, UNAIDS Executive Director

“Hope for universal access must not turn into a nightmare. Innovative financing mechanisms such as MASSIVEGOOD are critical to keeping the four million on antiretroviral treatment alive,” said Mr Sidibé.

The Millennium Foundation created MASSIVEGOOD with the support of the global travel and tourism industry. Funds will be distributed to UNITAID, an organization which increases the availability of key treatments in poor countries by purchasing life-saving drugs.

At the official launch on 4 March Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon clicked on MASSIVEGOOD and made the very first $2 donation. He was joined by Mr Sidibé, Mr Clinton and other leaders in innovative financing.

Mr Clinton said “With MASSIVEGOOD, the Millennium Foundation has found a way to involve millions in a new way to solve today’s global health crisis. It really is a great honour to be the first to click MASSIVEGOOD and I look forward to watching movement grow.”

Other key figures in global health also praised the initiative. Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of the World Health Organization, said “The launch of MASSIVEGOOD is happening at a critical turning point in the international community’s commitment to the Millennium Development Goals. With only five years left to act on the promises of the 2000 Millennium Declaration, we need initiatives that encourage everyday people to get involved in global health causes.”

The launch is part of series of events in New York City promoting innovative fundraising mechanism. Earlier in the week, Grammy Award-winning recording artist Will.I.Am recorded a new song, “MASSIVEGOOD” in collaboration with DJ David Guetta and internationally acclaimed South African singer Yvonne Chaka Chaka.

While celebrities and world leaders are helping MASSIVEGOOD to take off, it will be up to individual travellers to transform their pocket change into a ticket to a better life for millions of people in developing countries.

Related feature stories


Social media:

MASSIVEGOOD on facebook


External links:

MASSIVEGOOD

Millennium Foundation

UNITAID