- Historic $1.5 billion partnership between Africa CDC and Mastercard Foundation launched in June 2021 to purchase COVID-19 vaccines, support the delivery of vaccinations to millions more, and strengthen Africa’s long-term health security and response to future pandemics.
- Other significant achievements include creating 22,520 jobs across 25 member states, 5,628 youth employed, training and deploying over 37,609 health workers, and establishing 32 laboratories for genomic sequencing of SARS-COV-2 and other pathogens.
- The initiative now shifts focus to integrating COVID-19 vaccinations into routine national immunization programs
The Saving Lives and Livelihoods initiative, a historic $1.5 billion partnership between Mastercard Foundation and the Africa CDC, has achieved significant milestones two years after its launch in June 2021. As of June 2023, the initiative has administered over 32 million COVID-19 vaccine doses, contributing to the full vaccination of 52 percent target population in Africa.
Set up at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the initiative seeks to ensure vaccine equity for Africa by purchasing vaccines for more than 65 million people, supporting the delivery of vaccinations to millions more, and integrating into and supporting the delivery of routine immunization, ensuring the strengthening of public health systems in Africa. The efforts led to the participation of 51 African Union (AU) member states, with 25 currently in the implementation phase, collaborating with local ministries of health, the Africa CDC, the Mastercard Foundation, and implementing partners.
Other key achievements include creating over 22,520 jobs in 25 member states, 5,628 youths employed, training and deploying 37,609 health workers, and establishing 32 laboratories capable of genomic sequencing of COVID-19 and other pathogens, up from just two at the start of the pandemic. Additionally, the Africa CDC hired 106 employees across various program areas, strengthening its capacity.
“As the Saving Lives and Livelihoods Initiative enters its third year, it continues to catalyze positive change and a beacon of hope for millions of Africans. By prioritizing equitable vaccine distribution, strengthening Africa’s public health systems, and nurturing vaccine manufacturing capacity, the initiative is making a lasting impact on the continent’s health and well-being,” said Dr. Jean Kaseya, Director General of the Africa CDC.
The program is also investing in the procurement of cold chain equipment across 32 countries as part of joint efforts with the United Nations Children’s Fund.
Saving Lives and Livelihoods is actively contributing to the development of robust human capital for vaccine manufacturing in Africa by participating in the AU Partnership for African Vaccine Manufacturing (PAVM) agenda, which aims to enable the continent to manufacture 60 percent of its vaccines by 2040. So far, 53 experts from member states have received training, and an additional 24 are set to receive training at various international vaccine training institutes.
“We are proud of the partnership with the Africa CDC. Saving Lives and Livelihoods is an unprecedented initiative that has greatly impacted Africa’s long-term health security. As we reflect on the impact so far, we are optimistic about the future we are building for a robust health system and a locally trained workforce of African experts in vaccine manufacturing and health services,” said Reeta Roy, President and CEO of the Mastercard Foundation.
Despite the end of the global COVID-19 emergency, as declared by the World Health Organization, the need for robust health systems remains. The Africa CDC, elevated to an autonomous agency reporting to a Bureau of Presidents, is leading efforts to integrate COVID-19 vaccinations into routine national immunization programs.
The Mastercard Foundation recently announced a $45 million partnership with Institut Pasteur de Dakar (IPD) to establish a pan-African training centre for biomanufacturing, reinforcing a key component of the Saving Lives and Livelihoods initiative to strengthen vaccine manufacturing. The MADIBA (Manufacturing in Africa for Disease Immunization and Building Autonomy) is an IPD project focused on building the vaccine manufacturing workforce in Africa.
About the Saving Lives and Livelihoods initiative
The Saving Lives and Livelihoods initiative is a USD 1.5 million partnership between the Mastercard Foundation and the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) that aims to ensure vaccine equity for Africa by purchasing vaccines for more than 65 million people, supporting in the delivery of vaccinations to millions more, and integrating the covid-19 vaccine into routine immunization in Africa. The initiative supports and contributes to the Foundation’s Young Africa Works strategy, which seeks to enable 30 million young people, particularly young women, to access dignified and fulfilling work by 2030.
For more information on the Saving Lives and Livelihoods initiative, please visit: https://africacdc.org/saving-lives-and-livelihoods/
About the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC)
Africa CDC is a continental autonomous health agency of the African Union established to support public health initiatives of Member States and strengthen the capacity of their public health institutions to detect, prevent, control, and respond quickly and effectively to disease threats.
For more information, please visit: http://www.africacdc.org
The Mastercard Foundation works with visionary organizations to enable young people in Africa and Indigenous communities in Canada to access dignified and fulfilling work. It is one of the largest private foundations in the world with a mission to advance learning and promote financial inclusion to create an inclusive and equitable world. It was established in 2006 through the generosity of Mastercard when it became a public company. The Foundation is an independent organization, and its policies, operations, and program decisions are determined by its own Board of Directors and senior leadership team. It is a registered Canadian charity with offices in Toronto, Kigali, Accra, Nairobi, Kampala, Lagos, Dakar, and Addis Ababa.
For more information, visit: www.mastercardfdn.org or follow @MastercardFdn.
Dorothy Wambeti Njagi
Senior Communications Officer,
Nonye Mpho Omotola
Head, Health Sector, Program Communications