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 Home > News & Policies > March 2008

For Immediate Release
March 31, 2008

Statement by Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives Director Jay Hein Honoring PEPFAR Achievement in Rwanda

KIGALI, RWANDA - White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives Director Jay Hein today delivered the following statement at an event with the Government of Rwanda recognizing the achievement of 50,000 people now on antiretroviral treatment:

"I am pleased to be here today on behalf of President Bush and the American people to commend the people of Rwanda in their successful efforts to fight HIV/AIDS and other infectious diseases.

"Today marks an important milestone as 50,000 people are now receiving life-saving antiretroviral treatment. Only five short years ago, it was estimated it was estimated that only 50,000 people in all of sub-Saharan Africa were on antiretroviral treatment. It is wonderful to be here to highlight your country's leadership and success.

"His Excellency President Paul Kagame has provided inspiring leadership in this nation's fight against HIV/AIDS. Rwanda is a global leader in the global fight: a model of commitment to a multisectoral approach, drawing upon the strengths of governmental and nongovernmental organizations, including civil society, faith and community-based organizations, and the private sector. "Last month, President Bush traveled to Rwanda to review the significant progress in efforts to increase economic development and fight HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other treatable diseases. During his visit, President Bush highlighted the importance of involving all sectors of society, including faith-based and community organizations, to address health crises and development issues. "While there has been success, more work remains to be done to turn the tide against this pandemic. As President Bush has said, where you live should not determine if you live or die from HIV/AIDS. Thank you all for your commitment to the high calling of partnerships to transform the world"