The Vodafone Group Foundation and United Nations Foundation Announce Landmark Partnership
Geneva, Switzerland — June 17, 2004
The Vodafone Group Foundation and the United Nations Foundation (UN Foundation) announced today a five-year partnership agreement worth £15 million (US$27.4 million, EURO €22.5 million). This is the largest financial and time commitment made by any corporation to the UN Foundation. The UN Foundation will give £1 for every £2 contributed by the Vodafone Group Foundation.
The partnership combines the Group Foundation of the world’s leading mobile telecommunications company with the innovative public charity that American entrepreneur and philanthropist Ted Turner established with a $1 billion gift seven years ago to increase support and awareness for the United Nations (UN) global projects.
Three UN causes will be supported in the first year of this ground-breaking partnership: the Measles Initiative, which aims to vaccinate 200 million children in sub-Saharan Africa against measles by the end of 2005; the World Heritage program of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural organization (UNESCO), which seeks to protect the world’s most valued places such as the Galapagos Islands and Mount Kenya National Park in Africa; and the global HIV/AIDS pandemic.
The combined reach of the UN Foundation, UN and Vodafone Group Foundation brands is unprecedented and the partnership will aim to share knowledge and expertise to create the maximum positive impact. For example, Vodafone will be seeking ways to use its mobile communications technology to enhance the effectiveness of UN projects.
Vodafone also hopes to encourage its 60,000 employees and 133 million customers to become personally involved in awareness programs and fund-raising efforts over the five-year program.
Speaking at the launch, UN Foundation Chairman Ted Turner said: "The importance of this bold partnership with the Vodafone Group Foundation cannot be overstated. I hope that by sharing some of their technological, mass market and intellectual abilities to assist United Nations projects we will be able to unleash a new generation of global citizens."
Vodafone Group Plc Chief Executive Arun Sarin said: “Today is a significant development in our partnership between the Vodafone Group Foundation and the UN Foundation, and the opportunities for the future are exciting. Wherever possible we want to provide more than money to this partnership, and hope that some of our experience will be able to help the UN’s important programmes.”
Work with the Measles Initiative builds on a 2003 Vodafone Group Foundation/UN Foundation funded project that used £533,333 ($975,572, €806.458) to vaccinate over 800,000 children against the disease.
In 2004, £1 million ($1.83 million, €1.5 million) of the new partnership funding has been committed through this alliance to provide over 1.83 million vaccinations. It is expected to prevent more than 15,000 child deaths.
Funding for the World Heritage program will initially be used by UNESCO and Fauna and Flora International to pilot a Rapid Response Facility that can deploy timely funding and technical assistance to World Heritage sites that are either facing emergency needs or are listed by the World Heritage Convention on its ‘Sites in Danger’ list.
An example of where the Rapid Response Facility could provide immediate assistance is in Madagascar, a country with remarkable biodiversity that has recently emerged from a long period of unrest and now has an opportunity to develop a conservation program that could preserve large areas of unique habitat.
Details of how the funding for the global HIV/AIDS pandemic will be invested will be confirmed at a later date.
Vodafone Group Foundation
Bobby Leach or Jon Earl
+44 (0)1635 673310
Emma Wallace or Amanda Powell-Smith
The Forster Company
+44 20 7403 2230, +44 7710 787 537
United Nations Foundation
Christina LoNigro or Laura Rogers
+ 01 202 887 9040
Notes to editors:
1. Partnership funding - The Vodafone Group Foundation will give £10 million ($18.3 million, €15.1 million) over the five year period and this will be matched by £5 million ($9.1 million, €7.6 million) funding by the United Nations Foundation. It is expected that £2 million ($3.7 million, €3 million) will be donated to United Nations projects each year from 2004 to 2008.
2. The Vodafone Group Foundation – Established as a registered charity in 2002 to direct Vodafone Group Plc’s charitable donations. To date, 19 local Foundations have been set up in Vodafone operating companies and over the last two years, a total of £37.8m of funding has been donated to projects.
3. Vodafone Group Plc – The world’s leading mobile telecommunications company with equity interests in 26 countries and Partner Networks in a further 13 countries. It has over 133 million customers and 60,000 employees worldwide.
4. United Nations Foundation – Established as a registered charity in 1998 with a $1 billion gift from entrepreneur and philanthropist Ted Turner to support UN causes and activities. It builds and implements public-private partnerships and broadens support for the UN and global cooperation through advocacy and public outreach.