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Melinda Gates urges Congress not to cut foreign aid, to save lives

Melinda Gates

Melinda Gates, in Washington, D.C. today for the CARE Women’s Conference, called Congress not to cut foreign aid and also announced a new project, the Grand Challenge for Development: Saving Lives at Birth.

The Gates Foundation is among those asking Congress not to cut foreign aid.

The new initiative is aimed at supporting efforts, many of them paid for by U.S. taxpayers, aimed at saving mothers and babies’ lives in poor countries.

The Gates Foundation new, $50-million “grand challenge” announced by Melinda is focused on preventing maternal deaths and improving child survival. It is a collaboration with the U.S. Agency for International Development, the governments of Norway and Canada, the World Bank and others.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and USAID administrator Rajiv Shah (a former Gates Foundation program manager) also spoke. You can watch the press conference here.

And for more info re the gist of Melinda’s speech at the CARE conference, you can read her philanthropy blog post here.


About Author

Tom Paulson

Tom Paulson is founder and lead journalist at Humanosphere. Prior to operating this online news site, he reported on science,  medicine, health policy, aid and development for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Contact him at tom[at] or follow him on Twitter @tompaulson.