Global Citizen, the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens’ partner, successfully hosted the Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100 on December 2nd, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. In celebration of the centenary of Nelson Mandela, the festival aimed to raise awareness of the need for more people taking actions for reaching the Global Goals including ending the extreme poverty and achieving gender equality. It featured the world-renowned artists such as Beyoncé, JAY-Z, Ed Sheeran, and many others, for which the tickets were given out for free to those who have successfully taken actions to make a social impact as global citizens. Over 5.65 million actions were led to 58 commitments and announcements worth $7,207,436,824, which amount is set to affect the lives of 137,368,628 people in the world. Global Citizen surpassed its goal for commitments of USD $1 billion by seven times, with commitments from the World Bank, Vodacom, PEPFAR, Cisco, the government of South Africa and not to mention co-hosts of Mandela 100, the Motsepe Foundation. These donations alone added $5.4 billion on top of projected new commitments. Top commitments:Photo: Jens Meyer / AP Images
- Neglected Tropical Diseases: The fight to end debilitating, disfiguring, and fatal Neglected Tropical Diseases took a big step forward with impressive commitments from the END Fund, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, UK Aid, Virgin Unite, the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, the ELMA Foundation (UK), Mozambique, Botswana, and Belgium worth $149.9 million.
- HIV/AIDS: A number of significant pledges were made in the fight against HIV/AIDS. Ambassador Deborah Birx, on behalf of the United States, made an historic commitment of $1.2 billion channelled through PEPFAR on Global Citizen’s stage. It is the largest pledge the US government has made to HIV/AIDS. Alongside this pledge, the Global Fund committed $369 million in South Africa over the next 3 years. Of this sum, USD $90 million is set to go towards preventing new HIV infections among adolescent girls and young women most at risk.
- Motsepe Foundation: The hosting and presenting partner of the Global Citizen Festival: Mandela 100 announced a series of massive commitments totaling over USD $104.4 million. These commitments, announced by Dr. Precious Motsepe and Patrice Motsepe are set to advance education, economic inclusion, and equality of women and girls, as well as to ensure that current land discussions and processes in South Africa will result in land being made available to black people living in rural and urban areas.
- South Africa: His Excellency Cyril Ramaphosa, President of South Africa, former anti-apartheid leader alongside Nelson Mandela, addressed the FNB Stadium and viewers around the world with a message of Global Citizenship, committing RAND 2 million for youth in South Africa, and announcing the government’s intention to spend RAND 6 billion to provide free access to school for poor children in South Africa.
- Education: Significant strides were made to #FundEducation, with Sierra Leone committing to increase its education budget to 21.5%, Canada committing CAD $50,000,000 to Education Cannot Wait, and Germany committing to double its funding of the Global Partnership for Education from €18M to €37M and to increase its funding of Education Cannot Wait by €15M for a total of €31M. The government of Kenya also made a bold commitment to spend close to 30% of its budget on education.
- The US Congressional Black Caucusannounced bipartisan support for taking action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals through United States leadership and foreign aid.
- Ireland’s Taoiseach Leo Varadkar announced that Ireland will increase its aid budget by 15% in 2019, working toward its goal of allocating 0.7% of its total budget to ODA.
- Ghana has taken the lead alongside a number of Commonwealth countries and signed onto the Paris Call for Trust and Security in Cyberspace – a digital peace initiative.