CHARLOTTE, N.C., Dec. 1 In recognition of World AIDS Day, Charlotte Bobcats', Emeka Okafor, will be launching a mobile texting campaign to raise money for the One Million African Lives Initiative (OMALI), a program of the Safe Blood for Africa Foundation (SBFA). The goal of the Initiative is to save one million lives in Africa by 2011 by working in remote areas, providing blood testing kits and clinical training.
OMALI will be collecting donations to support their work in Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo through a mobile texting campaign which will be launched today in Charlotte, NC; the NBA and Charlotte Bobcats are supporting Okafor's unique program by hosting an In-Arena night showcasing a video PSA about OMALI at the Bobcats game this evening. The audience will have the opportunity to get involved through the mobile text donation campaign. When audience members text the word HIV to 90999, a $5 donation will be made to OMALI.
"Even in 2008, tainted blood transfusions continue to infect men, women and children with HIV throughout my home country of Nigeria and Africa as a whole," said Emeka Okafor. "By simply sending a text message, you can help stop the spread of HIV/AIDS and save thousands of African lives."
Since the launch of OMALI in 2006, $800,000 has been raised to support the Initiative's work in Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). While there's immense conflict taking place in the DRC, SBFA and OMALI have managed to achieve great success with their program in the remote areas of the Congo. They have delivered 20,000 HIV test kits and in many areas, Congolese citizens and SBFA staff are walking several days in the jungle to deliver test kits to clinics in extremely remote areas.
OMALI's goal for 2009 is to raise an additional $1 million and to expand the program to other areas of Africa.
Mobile Texting Campaign Details
A one-time charge of $5 will be added to mobile phone bills. Standard messaging rates and additional fees may apply. All charges are billed by and payable to the mobile service provider. Proceeds benefit Safe Blood for Africa. Customers can unsubscribe at any time by texting 'STOP' to 90999. Service providers include AT&T, Sprint/Nextel, T-Mobile and US Cellular.
To find out more about the One Million African Lives Initiative, please visit www.onemillionafricanlives.org and for the Safe Blood for Africa Foundation, please visit www.safebloodforafrica.org.
Press Conference WHO: Emeka Okafor, Charlotte Bobcats & OMALI Jeff Busch, Founder of SBFA WHEN: December 1, 2008 11:30AM WHERE: Time Warner Cable Arena - Lowe's Home Court 333 East Trade Street Charlotte, NC 28202 CONTACT: Media Credentials Michael Thompson Corporate Communications Charlotte Bobcats 704.688.8856
SOURCE Safe Blood for Africa(TM) Foundation