Mirriam in Italy |

In June, GFAN Speaker Mirriam Banda Chisamba visited Italy to participate in outreach and advocacy activities with civil society partners ahead of the Global Fund’s 6th Replenishment. Mirriam was invited by Network Italiano Salute Globale, the Global Health Italian Network, and AIDOS, an organization working for women’s right, dignity and freedom of choice.

Left to Right: Peter Sands, Senator Alessandro Alfieri, Mirriam Banda Chisamba

One of the main purposes of this trip was to have Mirriam support AIDOS and three members of Italian Parliament at the Italian Senate and at a hearing of the Commission of Foreign Affairs of the Chamber of Deputies. The MPs were presenting their report on a mission to Ethiopia that took place in May, and Mirriam was supporting these findings by sharing her experiences in community health in Zambia, as well as her experiences of the impact of Global Fund programs on her own life and in her community.

Mirriam speaking to the Senate with Peter Sands and other Civil Society representatives

Mirriam was able to share the ways in which the Italian government’s support of the Global Fund positively impacted the lives of so many in her own community, including her daughter Tamani, whose life was saved by the Global Fund’s programs after a severe Malaria infection. Mirriam shared how well the Global Fund’s mosquito net distribution program is working–she sleeps under her insecticide treated mosquito net every day and cannot remember the last time she had Malaria.

“As a GFAN speaker I have learnt that we need to keep on advocating for increased funding both locally and internationally as we are the living testimonies of what the Global Fund is doing in our lives. Together we can end the three epidemics AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.”
–Mirriam Banda Chisamba

We want to extend a big thanks to Mirriam, AIDOS, and Network Italiano Salute Globale for their hard work on this trip. Mirriam sharing her experiences about the impact of the Global Fund in her community, as well as the hard work of Italian advocates and Civil Society partners worked, as Italy announced its early and increased pledge on 25 August. Well done!