More than 12’000 Roche employees take to the streets to help AIDS orphans
1’400 walkers throughout Switzerland, 1’000 of them in Basel
Roche is staging its fifth Global Roche Employee AIDS Walk, the worldwide event that raises money for children who have been orphaned as a result of HIV/AIDS. This year, a total of 12’000 employees at 90 Roche sites all over the world will take part in the walk, which will be held on the same day everywhere. The bulk of the donations will be used to provide direct aid to children in Malawi who have lost one or both parents to AIDS. Roche will double the amount raised by its employees.
“Since the first AIDS Walk in 2003, tens of thousands of Roche employees at 90 sites all over the world have raised a total of 4.4 million Swiss francs to provide long-term help for AIDS orphans in Malawi”, said Urs Jaisli, chairman of Roche’s Sustainability Committee. “Roche is proud of its employees’ commitment to this cause and, together with the European Coalition of Positive People (ECPP) and UNICEF, will continue to provide long-term support for children’s day-care and education centres in Malawi.”
The money raised is donated to day-care centres run by ECPP that provide children with meals, clothing, basic healthcare and education. Roche also works with the Unicef Switzerland (United Nations Children’s Fund) to support the primary-level education of the orphans at local schools. Some Roche companies also donate part of the money raised to local projects that provide support for children suffering from the consequences of HIV/AIDS.
According to the United Nations (UN), Malawi is one of the world’s least developed countries. It has been hit hard by AIDS: more than half a million children have lost one or both parents to the disease1. Because of their poverty, these children often find that opportunities for education or any kind of training are closed to them.
Sustainability and social responsibility – a tradition at Roche
A strong commitment to the principle of sustainability has always been a feature of Roche’s culture and activities. The Group promotes an approach to corporate social responsibility that satisfies both its own criteria and the latest general standards. For over a century it has been actively engaged in efforts to improve healthcare provision all around the globe and it supports aid projects that primarily benefit the world’s poorest people.
Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is one of the world’s leading research-focused healthcare groups in the fields of pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. As the world’s biggest biotech company and an innovator of products and services for the early detection, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases, the Group contributes on a broad range of fronts to improving people’s health and quality of life. Roche is the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics and drugs for cancer and transplantation, a market leader in virology and active in other major therapeutic areas such as autoimmune diseases, inflammation, metabolic disorders and diseases of the central nervous system. In 2006 sales by the Pharmaceuticals Division totalled 33.3 billion Swiss francs, and the Diagnostics Division posted sales of 8.7 billion Swiss francs. Roche employs roughly 75,000 people worldwide and has R&D agreements and strategic alliances with numerous partners, including majority ownership interests in Genentech and Chugai. Roche’s Diagnostics Division offers a uniquely broad product portfolio and supplies a wide array of innovative testing products and services to researchers, physicians, patients, hospitals and laboratories world-wide. Additional information is available on the Internet at www.roche.com.
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