The United Nations Foundation will premiere today “A New Picture of Health,” a groundbreaking documentary about the work of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and its ongoing impact in saving millions of lives – particularly those of women and children – across the developing world.

“In less than a decade, close to six million lives have been saved by Global Fund programs,” said Timothy E. Wirth, President of the UN Foundation. "This documentary paints a compelling picture of why continued support will help the Global Fund save and improve the well-being of mothers and children across the globe.

Narrated by Dr. Jane Goodall, founder of the Jane Goodall Institute and UN Messenger of Peace, the film chronicles how U.S. investments in health are empowering communities and putting an end to diseases of poverty. The film includes personal stories from community health workers, patients, and community leaders to show the impact of the Global Fund’s programs in Ethiopia, Rwanda and Indonesia, and was filmed in broadcast-quality Hi Definition by filmmaker David Evans in April and May of 2010.

“Over the past few years, I have had the unique opportunity to travel to, and help those in need in Sudan, Haiti and most recently in Kenya with the United Nations World Food Programme, and see firsthand the debilitating effects of poverty, hunger and disease,” shared country artist and philanthropist Kenneth “Big Kenny” Alphin, who provided a special musical performance at the screening at the National Geographic Society. “This film is a powerful testament to what is working on the ground every day, transforming lives all over the world. Saving lives, there is no more noble way to show we care.”

The Global Fund is a unique global public-private partnership dedicated to attracting and disbursing resources to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria. Since 2002 the Global Fund has approved more than $19.5 billion in spending to combat these three diseases to date. About 35% of the Global Fund’s grants are used to build and strengthen health systems around the world.

“As a former Minister of Health for Botswana I can attest to the importance of collaboration and performance-based funding that the Global Fund fosters by integrating its grants into existing national health plans and building partnerships with all health stakeholders in countries. This unique approach is one of the key reasons for the Global Fund’s profound impact all over the world today,’ said Joy Phumaphi, Executive Secretary of the African Leaders for Malaria Alliance, a coalition of 35 African heads of state committed to eliminating global deaths from malaria by 2015.

2010 is an important year for The Global Fund, as it faces a replenishment need of between $13 and $20 billion over three years (2011-2013). Of this amount, more than half will support programs in Africa. The Global Fund’s replenishment occurs at a critical point—the two-thirds mark in achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

“The world has just five years left to meet the targets set out in the Millennium Development Goals, and the Global Fund is a key player in achieving the health-related targets,” said Natasha Bilimoria, President of Friends of the Global Fight, an organization that advocates on behalf of the Global Fund in the U.S. “As the world’s largest health financier, the Global Fund saves an unprecedented 4,000 lives every single day. The Global Fund has helped the world achieve amazing health progress in just the past eight years, and it is entirely possible that we could meet critical health targets – such as eliminating transmission of HIV from mothers to their children and ridding many African countries of malaria – by 2015, with adequate funding.”

To watch a preview of the video, click here.

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