Positive-Generation gets top prize at Africa Award ceremony

Positive-Generation, a Cameroon-based advocacy organization that fights for health rights for HIV-positive people, received the $100,000 prize for the 2012 ONE Africa Award today at the GAVI Alliance Partners Forum in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.

The annual award is given to the African organisation that shows the most promise in helping to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.

Dr. Sipho Moyo, ONE’s Africa Director said, ” I continue to be awed by how much Africa contributes towards it’s own progress and that of mankind. Africa is rising against all odds, led by its own innovative indigenous solutions. We gather today to celebrate the contribution of an organization that is one among many, that are a leading light on this journey of socio-economic transformation and empowerment in Africa. It’s our great privilege to offer the 2012 ONE Africa Award to Positive-Generation”.

A crowd of guests from the GAVI Partners Forum, Tanzanian journalists, local ONE volunteers, ONE staffers from Johannesburg, DC and London, attended the Africa Award ceremony. The Honorable Zitto Kabwe and GAVI Alliance Chair Dagfinn Hoybraten gave remarks on ONE’s work on the continent.

The effectiveness of advocacy was the recurring theme of the event. Positive-Generation (PG) Executive Director Fogué Foguitoexplained that “advocacy allows [HIV-positive] people to participate in the decision-making process in their lives,” both empowering them, creating a sense of community and ensuring their rights to HIV treatment.

“We dedicate this prize to all those who struggle for freedom, social justice and particularly to the young Africans who are engaged daily to improve the living conditions of their fellow citizens,” he said.

ONE was praised for our advocacy work by both Mr. Kabwe and Mr. Hoybraten. Mr. Kabwe said that our through policy intervention on the continent is the reason why he’s been “supporting ONE all the way” and signing our petitions.

Mr. Hoybraten discussed the critical need for advocacy in global health development. “The fact that this year’s winner focuses on innovative advocacy for health makes this an even more special occasion,” he said. “Innovation is what GAVI is all about – from technological innovations in vaccines and vaccine delivery, to GAVI’s public-private business model. And good health, particularly through immunization, is key to economic development and the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.”

He also reflected on ONE’s work in calling on world leaders to fund GAVI last year, and thanked ONE members for advocating for vaccines.

To find out what Positive-Generation plans to do with the prize money, read our interview with Fogué. For specific updates, photos and quotes from today’s events, read live blog of the Africa Award ceremony here.

Join us in congratulating Positive-Generation by leaving a comment and liking their Facebook page.