Fifth Anniversary for Annual Roche AIDS Walk in Nutley
More than 900 local Roche employees are participating in the fifth annual Global Roche Employee AIDS Walk today (one day before World AIDS Day, Saturday, December 1) to raise funds to support children infected and affected by HIV/AIDS here in New Jersey. Employees who volunteer to participate in the AIDS Walk collect donations for their efforts, and Roche matches these funds.
The Global Roche Employee AIDS Walk also takes place today at 95 company locations worldwide, including operations in Nutley and Branchburg, New Jersey; Indianapolis, Indiana; Florence, South Carolina; Boulder, Colorado; Palo Alto and Pleasanton, California; as well as in Basel, Switzerland. To date, Roche has raised a total of approximately $3.9 million (4.4 million Swiss Francs) since the first AIDS walk in 2003. In 2006, more than 14,000 employees took part.
“We are so grateful to the wonderful people at Roche who make this major commitment to the fight against AIDS every year. Funds raised at the Roche AIDS Walk go directly to help hundreds of men, women and children living with HIV/AIDS in New Jersey and around the world. There is no greater need or better cause. Thank You Roche!” said Jerry McCathern, Senior Director of Development, Hyacinth AIDS Foundation.
New Jersey AIDS Partnership
A portion of donations from the Nutley Walk are distributed to community-based non-profit organizations serving people living with HIV/AIDS through the New Jersey AIDS Partnership (NJAP). According to the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services, 34,199 people were reported living with HIV/AIDS in New Jersey in 2007 and the state ranks fifth in the nation in the number of reported cases. Since the inception of the Roche Employee AIDS Walk in 2003, Roche has donated over $238,000 to NJAP.
The New Jersey AIDS Partnership funds innovative programs and timely approaches that provide effective community-based HIV/AIDS education efforts, as well as care and treatment services. Since 1998, they have given $5.3 million dollars to support 270 programs throughout New Jersey and 95 percent of all money raised is invested in the community. They also focus on the neediest and at-risk populations with prevention and risk reduction education as well as early intervention services to impact the spread of the disease. NJAP also funds two programs that provide a continuum of coordinated services to children orphaned by HIV/AIDS, their families and caregivers.
"I am very pleased that Roche is continuing to make a difference in the lives of children with HIV/AIDS through donations raised by our employees, partnered with a match made by the Roche Group,” said Roche Corporate Relations and Contributions Director, Ellen Lambert. “We are also very proud that this walk has promoted prevention, increased public interest and education in addition to helping so many patients and their families in the past five years.”
In addition to supporting the New Jersey AIDS Partnership, funds raised through the Roche Employee AIDS Walk will be donated to UNICEF to support children in Malawi who have lost one or both parents to AIDS. These donations fund orphanages providing food, clothing, basic healthcare and schooling. More than half a million children in Malawi have lost one or both parents to AIDS. Health experts say that sub-Saharan Africa remains the worst affected region in the world; in 2006, 24.7 million people were living with HIV. According to the World Health Organization, globally 63 percent of all people living with HIV reside in Sub-Saharan Africa. This region carries the highest burden of HIV infection and HIV/AIDS mortality in the world. Approximately three-quarters of women and 90% of children are living with AIDS in this region.
Top Fundraisers Visit Malawi
Each year, the names of the top fund-raisers from around the globe are entered into a drawing and several are selected to visit Malawi. During their trip, the participants have the opportunity to visit the orphan centers, speak to the children, local helpers and the European Coalition of Positive People (ECPP), and see for themselves how the donations from the Global Roche Employee AIDS Walk are being used.
About the Global Roche Employee AIDS Walk
The first Roche Employee AIDS Walk took place in 2003 as a pilot project involving three Roche locations. Immensely successful in its first year, the event was subsequently extended to include all Roche sites. Since 2003, Roche employees worldwide have taken part in the annual walk, raising money for children affected by HIV/AIDS in New Jersey and in Malawi.
Hoffmann-La Roche Inc. (Roche), based in Nutley, N.J., is the U.S. pharmaceuticals headquarters of the Roche Group, one of the world’s leading research-oriented healthcare groups with core businesses in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. For more than 100 years in the U.S., Roche has been committed to developing innovative products and services that address prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diseases, thus enhancing people’s health and quality of life. An employer of choice, in 2007 Roche was named Top Company of the Year by Med Ad News and one of the Top 20 Employers (Science magazine). In 2006, Roche was ranked the No. 1 Company to Sell For (Selling Power), and one of AARP’s Top Companies for Older Workers, and in 2005, Roche was named one of Fortune magazine’s Best Companies to Work For in America. For additional information about the U.S. pharmaceuticals business, visit our websites: http://www.rocheusa.com or www.roche.us.
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