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Save the Children Calls for HIV Investment

August 9, 2006

Save the Children Calls for Investment for the Millions of Children Affected by HIV and AIDS

Toronto, ON (August 9, 2006) On the eve of the 16th International AIDS Conference, in Toronto, Canada from 13-18 August, Save the Children is calling for a scaling up of a comprehensive global response to children affected by HIV/AIDS. The non-governmental agency, which works to ensure that the rights of children are upheld worldwide, reports that millions of children affected by HIV and AIDS lack access to prevention, treatment, care and support.

“Donors must mobilise more resources to protect and promote the rights of children in the face of the AIDS epidemic,” states Felicity Daly, HIV and AIDS Advocate for Save the Children UK.

Save the Children urges G8 member nations to honour their HIV and AIDS commitments and provide proper support for orphans and vulnerable children. Greater investment must also be channelled towards HIV prevention information and services for youth as well as to strengthen health systems in order to diagnose and treat children with HIV and AIDS more quickly.

“Children and young adults are the most vulnerable members of communities affected by HIV and AIDS,” said Jodie Fonseca, Education and HIV and AIDS Specialist for Save the Children USA. “Children increasingly shoulder the burden of the epidemic and often leave school to take on jobs or to provide care for ill parents, siblings and households.”

Fonseca added, “These children and their caregivers need access to basic services that will allow them to regain their childhood and provide them hope for their future. Communities also need support for providing care and protection for children.”

Save the Children urges that programmes supported by the Global Fund must demonstrate benefits to children affected by HIV, malaria and tuberculosis as well as strengthen national health systems. The devastating effect of HIV and AIDS on children’s lives is indisputable and requires greater focus combined with sufficient and sustainable resources.

Save the Children fights for children around the world who suffer from poverty, disease, injustice and violence. We work with them to find lifelong answers to the problems they face.

ENDS

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