Global Citizen and the European Commission announced on Thursday a new campaign, Global Goal: Unite for Our Future, with the aim of ensuring that everyone, everywhere in the world, has access to COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines. The campaign also seeks to lessen the impact of COVID-19 on the world’s most vulnerable people, ensuring they still have access to education, clean water, and more.
The campaign, launched under the patronage of European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, will focus on the development of tools to tackle COVID-19, and ensuring that these tools are available to all communities equally, as well as mitigating the impacts of COVID-19 on those living in poverty.
“Around the world, people everywhere are desperate to resume a greater semblance of normalcy, spend time with friends and loved ones, venture safely outside their homes, and to earn a decent wage,” said Hugh Evans, co-founder and CEO of Global Citizen.
“To make this a reality, we need to make COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines available to everyone, everywhere,” he continued. “The critical work done by scientists globally, the efforts to distribute solutions regardless of cost, income, or geography, and the need to rebuild economies in the poorest countries, all require a massive increase in funding.”
At the same time as tackling COVID-19, the international community must also work to lessen the virus’ impact on other core issues — like hunger, education, gender equality, and more — in the effort to end extreme poverty by 2030.
Evans added: “No one is safe until everyone is safe.”
The campaign will drive a collective effort by Global Citizens, alongside some of the world’s biggest artists, to call on world leaders to make commitments toward ensuring COVID-19 tools and treatments are available for all. It will culminate with an international pledging summit on June 27.
The campaign comes as a collaboration between Global Citizen, the European Commission, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Wellcome Trust.
“The more and quicker we mobilize resources and join forces, the higher the chances of getting a vaccine for all within our reach,” said von der Leyen. “The world needs to come out stronger from this pandemic. We should be more prepared to face such a crisis in the future, with fair access to medicine and strong health systems everywhere around the Earth. This is a global challenge, and it requires truly global mobilization.”
World leaders from France, South Africa, Germany, Norway, Canada, Italy, Spain, the UK, Austria, Belgium, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Mexico, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, and New Zealand, along with foundations and philanthropists, have joined the European Union (EU) in a rallying call for an investment of billions toward the development and equitable distribution of COVID-19 tests, treatments, and vaccines globally.
Angela Merkel, chancellor of Germany, said: “We will only be able to overcome the pandemic if we achieve a truly global solution to the COVID-19 crisis. This is a test of our generation’s human kindness. And this test will also teach us important lessons on how to address global challenges in the future.”
Emmanuel Macron, president of France, continued: “We have joined forces to collectively speed up our work to combat COVID-19 and make the vaccine a global public good. The fight goes on. We must not let up.”
South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa highlighted that “now, more than ever, the world needs solidarity and cooperation to mobilize and guide investments, and drive delivery towards equitable access for new COVID-19 diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines.”
“Only working together and working globally we shall overcome this pandemic,” he added.
The campaign will also be supported by leading names in entertainment from around the world, including: Adam Lambert, Chloe X Halle, Chris Rock, Coldplay, Dionne Warwick, Femi Kuti, Fher of Maná, Hugh Jackman, Idris & Sabrina Elba, J Balvin, Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, Lang Lang, Miley Cyrus, Padma Lakshmi, Rachel Brosnahan, and Shakira. These artists and entertainers will help rally the public to call on their world leaders to commit the funding needed to ensure equal access to the tools needed to fight COVID-19.
Artists like Adam Lambert, Lang Lang, Padma Lakshmi, Fher of Mexican rock band Maná, Dionne Warwick, Chloe X Halle, Femi Kuti, and Rachel Brosnahan will also be offering exclusive, extremely exciting Rewards for Global Citizens taking action to support the campaign — including digital happy hours, cooking lessons, private concerts, and more.
“We need a movement of Global Citizens calling on governments, corporations, and philanthropists to make the investments needed to end the COVID-19 era," said Hugh Jackman, joining Thursday's press conference via video. "There are labs full of the best scientists all over the world racing to develop COVID-19 tools and treatments at great speed, but we have a long way to go."
“At a time where we’ve seen injustices in our society increase even more, we now have the opportunity to take a stand for equality and health for all," Miley Cyrus continued. "Because this pandemic has affected our entire world, we need to ensure that everyone, everywhere, has the solutions for this pandmeic: testing, treatments, and a vaccine."
She added: "Together people around the globe across ages, borders, and identities, are calling on governments, businesses, and philanthropists to step up their funding for these critical solutions."
In April, Global Citizen, together with Lady Gaga, announced $127.9 million in commitments to support frontline health care workers in the fight against COVID-19, as a result of the One World: Together At Home campaign.
One World: Together At Home culminated in a global broadcast event that saw more than 300 million people tune in across 175 countries to see performances from an incredible lineup, alongside commitments from corporate partners and philanthropists in support of the WHO’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund, powered by the UN Foundation.
Now, following that campaign, Global Goal: Unite for Our Future is an urgent and critical next step in a marathon effort that international health organizations estimate will ultimately cost tens of billions of dollars: to protect the global population against COVID-19.
Funding efforts to tackle COVID-19 saw a significant step forward on May 4, when more than 40 countries, United Nations bodies, and philanthropies pledged billions toward the research and development of COVID-19 solutions, at a virtual summit convened by the European Union.
But more is needed — and this campaign will be working to help fund those vital organizations that, together, lead the global efforts to develop COVID-19 treatments, distribute them equally, and strengthen health systems to ensure a pandemic like COVID-19 doesn’t happen again.
These organizations include: CEPI; FIND; Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance; the Global Fund; the WHO’s COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund, powered by the UN Foundation; UNITAID; and the International and Regional Response Network, supported by Global Citizen.