Nigeria, Lagos; 3 December 2014 — As we mark the World AIDS Day with the theme “Getting to Zero” and a focus on achieving zero infection, zero discrimination and zero AIDS-related death,  The Coca-Cola Company and (RED) invite all Nigerians to join efforts to help end mother-to-child transmission of HIV through a global campaign tagged ‘Share the sound of an AIDS free generation’

Award winning hip-hop artiste, Wyclef Jean, recorded a song titled Divine Sorrow for the (RED) campaign together with various Coke Studio Africa artistes, including Chidinma from Nigeria. Proceeds from the song, which is available for download as ringtone on the MTN network, will go to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and also to finance grants which provide HIV prevention, testing, counseling, treatment and care.

The campaign shares a message of hope and unity to empower today’s youth to understand that they can be the generation to end the AIDS pandemic. According to Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS), 650 babies are born with HIV every day, yet life-saving medication exists and costs as little as $.40 a day. That same medication can reduce the risk of an HIV-positive woman passing on the virus to her baby by 95%. In 2013, for the first time since the discovery of the virus, more people were newly added to treatment than were newly infected with HIV, a critical milestone marking the beginning of the end of AIDS. 

“We want to use the instrument of music and its strong connection with the youth to reinforce the message that it is in the hands of this generation to stop the spread of HIV/AIDS,” said Patricia Jemibewon, Marketing Director at Coca-Cola Nigeria. Citing the success of the Coke Studio Concerts which have taken several university campuses by storm in recent weeks, she said “The experience has reinforced Coca-Cola’s belief that Nigerian youth can be rallied for a good cause with good music.”

The Coca-Cola Company is a frontline player in the global fight to end HIV/AIDS. Since 2006, The Coca-Cola Company and its foundation have committed over $15 million in the fight to end AIDS through awareness, education and prevention. In 2011, The Coca-Cola Company initially pledged $5 million to the Global Fund through the partnership with (RED) and recently raised its commitment by an additional $2 million directly to the fund. This year, Coca-Cola will leverage the size and scale of the system to rally for the cause ultimately activating this campaign in over 40 countries worldwide.

Coca-Cola and (RED) have partnered with MTN Nigeria, the largest mobile telecommunications operator in Nigeria to make the song available to all Nigerians. To download cut downs of the song as your Caller Ring Back Tune (CRBT), text 10 to 4100 (at a cost of N50 per subscription/month) from their MTN lines; part of the proceeds from downloads will be donated to RED.

To watch the video of Divine Sorrow, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rquWgCAhY8Q

 

-ENDS-

 

NOTES FOR THE EDITOR
 

About Coca Cola Nigeria Limited

Coca-Cola Nigeria, an active citizen of the community and one of the most respected companies in Nigeria, is a subsidiary of The Coca-Cola Company, the world's largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands.  Led by Coca-Cola, one of the world's most valuable and recognizable brands, our Company's portfolio features 17 billion-dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitamin water, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Georgia and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks.

Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of more than 1.9 billion servings a day.  With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. Together with our bottling partners, we rank among the world's top 10 private employers with more than 700,000 system associates
 

About (RED) 

(RED) was founded in 2006 by Bono and Bobby Shriver to engage businesses and people in the fight against AIDS. (RED) partners with the world’s most iconic brands who contribute up to 50% of profits from (RED)-branded goods and services to the Global Fund. (RED) Proud Partners include: Apple, Starbucks, Galaxy Chocolate (UK), The Coca-Cola Company, Bank of America, Beats by Dr. Dre, Belvedere, Claro, SAP, Telcel and Live Nation Entertainment. (RED) Special Edition partners include: aden+anais, Jonathan Adler, Theory, HEAD, Kidrobot, Mophie, FEED, Sir Richard's Condom Company, Shazam, Square, Girl Skateboards, Nanda Home, Bottletop USA and Bed Bath & Beyond. To date, (RED) has generated more than $275 million for the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, to support HIV/AIDS grants in Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Rwanda, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania and Zambia. 100 percent of that money goes to work on the ground – no overhead is taken. Global Fund grants that (RED) supports have impacted more than 55 million people with HIV prevention, treatment, counseling, HIV testing and care services. (RED) is a division of The ONE Campaign. Learn more at www.red.org.
 

About the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria 

The Global Fund is a 21st-century organization designed to accelerate the end of AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria as epidemics. As a partnership between governments, civil society, the private sector and people affected by the diseases, the Global Fund mobilizes and invests nearly US$4 billion a year to support programs run by local experts in more than 140 countries. By challenging barriers and embracing innovative approaches, partners are working together to end these epidemics. Learn more at www.theglobalfund.org
 

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Tosin Akin-Ogundeji

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