When recently asked what we can do to step up the pace in our efforts to end the AIDS epidemic, I was instantly reminded of a recent email from the Student Global AIDS Campaign (SGAC). The email was urging us, as constituents, to plead with the senate and foreign operation subcommittee to move the $300 million dollars that are unable to be appropriated to the Global AIDS Fund into the President’s Emergency Plan For AIDS Relief (PEPFAR).
This would keep HIV/AIDS elected funds designated towards HIV/AIDS-related programs. Moving the money to PEPFAR would also help make up for the overall $600 million dollar cut to PEPFAR that we saw this year. Operating on the $600 million dollar cut would allow for a patient treatment numbers similar to the programs first year in 2006. By way of this $300 million dollars, we will be able to continue the scale up of access to HIV treatment.
This is one step of “stepping up the pace” in our efforts to end the AIDS epidemic. Another step is collaborations between agencies and individuals fighting the AIDS epidemic. A capacity building specialist from Hands United collaborating with The Student Global AIDS Campaign to see funds returned to PEPFAR. The concept of advocates, educators, researchers, and physicians strategically planning the end of the AIDS epidemic is a larger step towards ending the AIDS epidemic.
An additional step is you taking action. As constituents, you hold genuine power and influence over the officials you elect. We sometimes forget this. You can start by contacting the senate and foreign operations subcommittee in regards to this $300 million dollars to be put into PEPFAR. Then, find the part of the movement that interests you. Advocate? Educate? Fundraise?
Will you assist in stepping up the pace in our efforts to end the AIDS epidemic?
Written By: Zeena Hazuri; CBA Specialist