Geneva, 11 October 2021 – This Monday morning, 11 October, Mr Serge Dal Busco, President of the Council of State of Geneva, symbolically awarded the parcel of the Vigne des Nations to Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. This recognition honours the commitment of this organisation to guaranteeing fair and equitable access to vaccines around the world.
The ceremony took place in the presence of the Vice-President of the Grand Council of Geneva, Mr Jean-Luc Forni; Mr Mauro Poggia, State Councillor in charge of the of the Department of Security, Population and Health of Geneva; Mr Gilbert Vonlanthen, Mayor of the Commune of Bernex; Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi; and a small number of guests.
Founded in 2000, Gavi works to save lives by increasing the equitable and sustainable use of vaccines. A public-private partnership, its strategy has concentrated on access to vaccination for children and populations in lower-income countries. 888 million children have been immunised and more than 15 million future deaths prevented thanks to the work of Gavi.
“The awarding of the 2020 vintage is an excellent occasion to recognise the key role of Gavi in the health landscape of International Geneva,” said Mr Serge Dal Busco, President of the Council of State of Geneva. “Its public-private partnership model, and its 2018 move to the Global Health Campus, has breathed new energy into public health action to support fragile populations and children.”
“Geneva is our home – and Switzerland is a proud and committed supporter of COVAX, having pledged over CHF 100 million in funding and donated 4 million doses of vaccines,” added Dr Seth Berkley, CEO of Gavi. “This recognition from the Republic and Canton of Geneva is particularly touching because it reflects over 20 years of partnership, and we have never been more honoured to be at the heart of International Geneva.”
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Gavi has developed and co-led COVAX, working with partners, vaccine manufacturers in developed and developing countries and the World Bank. COVAX is the largest multilateral initiative since the Paris climate accord.
The awarding of the vintage of the Vigne des Nations, in the State Vineyard on the hillside of Lully, recognises an international organisation or human rights association every year.