Jun 21, 2016
By: Ellen Agler, Chief Executive Officer
Over 1.6 billion people are affected by neglected tropical diseases (NTDs). Lymphatic filariasis, river blindness, schistosomiasis, trachoma, and intestinal worms–five of the most common NTDs–have caused much pain and suffering, ranging from physical disability and economic loss, to daily discomfort and social exclusion. Finding ways to end this suffering and enable people to live healthier, happier lives is what motivates us at the END Fund every single day. This is why I am honored to share our 2015 Annual Report.
While the main intention embedded in the END Fund’s creation was to demonstrate that simple, cost-effective solutions exist for these diseases of neglect, I recognize how much more the END Fund and our partners have achieved through thoughtful and effective collaboration. Since our founding, we have worked across 22 countries and reached over 85 million people who needed treatment. We have mobilized more than $50 million in new commitments, making the END Fund the fastest growing source of new private funds to the NTD sector.
Our collective work has always been critically important for so many who understand the impact of NTDs. Yet the urgency and necessity has become even clearer with recent findings from Erasmus University that sub-Saharan Africa alone could save $52 billion by 2030 if the region successfully meets the World Health Organization’s control and elimination goals for the five most common NTDs.
In both reflecting on where we have been, and seeing the possibilities ahead, I am proud to be on this journey with, and to work alongside, so many passionate and dedicated individuals. Whether diligently researching and sharing new data, donating time to the cause, or sharing the gift of financial support, each of you has lovingly contributed to make the END Fund what it is today. It is with gratitude for these collective contributions that I hope the enclosed stories and successes resonate with you, especially because you’ve been a part of making them possible.
I look forward to the road ahead and to continuing on this journey together to end the neglect.