Ten community-based organisations have won the 2016 Red Ribbon Award for their inspiring work towards ending or reducing the impact of the AIDS epidemic. One of those organisations includes the Māori Indigenous and South Pacific HIV/AIDS Foundation who took home the award for outstanding community leadership on AIDS.
They were presented with the prize in a special ceremony at the 21st International AIDS Conference in Durban, South Africa.
UNAIDS Executive Director Michael Sidibe says, "Across regions and cultures, communities are showing the world that ending AIDS is possible. Their courage, innovation and leadership id helping us overcome barriers and better respond to the needs of those most affected by the epidemic."
The Māori HIV Foundation was one of 1,000 nominations that were received from more than 120 countries.
Co-Chair of the foundation, Apihaka Mack says, "It's the first time an Indigenous, Māori, Pacific Island or New Zealand group has been acknowledged in this manner...the Red Ribbon Award was first given in 2006 and has recognised 85 organisations from over 50 countries since then as leading community-based responses to AIDS.
Such organisations lie at the heart of the response to the AIDS epidemic- displaying extraordinary courage, resilience and strength in addressing one of the greatest challenges of our time."
Each of the winning organisations will receive a $10,000 USD grant and have been invited to participate in AIDS 2016, where they organise Community Dialogue Space in the Global Village.