More Than 100,000 People Unite To Support AIDS Prevention And Care Programs Through Bristol-Myers Squibb 2005 World AIDS Day Campaign
Company’s Annual “Light to Unite” Campaign Provides $100,000 for the National AIDS Fund
WASHINGTON, D.C. (December 16, 2005) -- Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE:BMY) today presented a $100,000 donation to the National AIDS Fund to provide funding for AIDS service organizations across the United States. The donation is the result of the company’s “Light to Unite” campaign, launched in support of World AIDS Day 2005.
The $100,000 donation was presented this morning by Ron Cooper, senior vice president, Bristol-Myers Squibb Virology and Kevin Trapp, senior director, strategy and operations, Bristol-Myers Squibb Virology to Kandy Ferree, president and CEO of the National AIDS Fund.
“Our annual Light to Unite campaign provided thousands of people with the opportunity to embrace the World AIDS Day message of support and hope for people living with HIV,” said Cooper of Bristol-Myers Squibb. “This campaign further demonstrates the Bristol-Myers Squibb commitment to helping lead the fight against HIV/AIDS worldwide. We are pleased to make a gift to the National AIDS Fund, which will help local AIDS organizations throughout the United States implement state-of-the-art prevention and care programs within their communities.”
World AIDS Day is an annual global event on December 1 dedicated to remembering the people who have died from AIDS, learning more about the devastating effects of the disease around the world, and reaffirming the commitment to fight it.
Visitors to the “Light to Unite” website were invited to light a virtual candle on the world map to represent love, hope, remembrance, strength, or health in the fight against HIV/AIDS. For each candle lit, Bristol-Myers Squibb contributed $1.00 to the National AIDS Fund, and in the end more than 100,000 virtual candles were lit on www.lighttounite.org from November 17 through December 1, 2005.
“We are thankful that Bristol-Myers Squibb has provided this donation, which will directly impact community efforts,” said Ferree of the National AIDS Fund. “The caring and generosity inspired by the visitors to the Light to Unite website will now resonate throughout 2006 through the National AIDS Fund and the organizations it supports.”
The National AIDS Fund is one of America’s largest philanthropic organizations dedicated to eliminating HIV/AIDS as a major health and social problem. Its mission is to reduce the incidence and impact of HIV/AIDS by promoting leadership and generating resources for effective community responses to the epidemic. Through 29 state and local funding partners – its Community Partnerships – the National AIDS Fund provides grants and other support totaling more than $8 million annually to over 400 community-based organizations for HIV/AIDS prevention and care programs. Together, the National AIDS Fund and its Community Partnerships have invested $126 million in HIV/AIDS prevention and care programs since 1988.
According to UNAIDS, AIDS has killed more than 25 million people since it was ?rst recognized in 1981, making it one of the most destructive epidemics in recorded history. The AIDS epidemic claimed 3.1 million [2.8–3.6 million] lives in 2005, and more than half a million (570,000) were children. An estimated 40.3 million people are now living with HIV. Close to 5 million people were newly infected with the virus in 2005. The epidemic continues in the United States as well. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 40,000 persons are newly infected with HIV in the U.S. annually. An estimated 1,039,000 to 1,185,000 persons were living with HIV in the United States at the end of 2003, 24 to 27 percent of whom were undiagnosed and unaware of their HIV status.
About Bristol-Myers Squibb
Bristol-Myers Squibb is a global pharmaceutical and related health care products company whose mission is to extend and enhance human life.
A further commitment by the company to HIV/AIDS is the SECURE THE FUTURE® initiative, which is an important public/private partnership to fight HIV/AIDS in Africa. It is a multi-year, $150 million program to help women and children with HIV/AIDS in ten sub-Saharan Africa countries. As part of the SECURE THE FUTURE initiative, Bristol-Myers Squibb just has established two medical centers in Africa dedicated to caring for HIV/AIDS-infected infants and children, and three more are under construction.
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