The initiative, called the "Initiative To Save a Million Lives," is sponsored by UNICEF, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Health Organization, the World Bank and other donor countries. The money raised will be used to train about 40,000 health workers and to purchase treatments for malaria, HIV/AIDS and other diseases.
The initiative will "deliver basic, cost-effective and lifesaving health services to mothers and children in countries where the needs are greatest," Harper said, adding that once it is fully implemented, the program "will save over 500 children's lives every day".
Harper also said that Canada will double its aid to Africa by 2009, as well as meet the average aid contribution to the continent of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
The average OECD African aid contribution was 0.46% of gross domestic product in 2006. "These actions are getting real results, including lower rates of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, increased peace and security, stronger economic growth and better governance," Harper said.
Source: Kaiser Family Foundation