The First Lady, Jeannette Kagame, this week attended a high-level two-day summit in Washington DC that focused on improving health for women and children in the world.
The “Summit to Save Lives” which was organized by the George W. Bush Institute, was also used as a platform to announce a partnership known as ‘Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon’ that will pull public and private investments to combat cervical and breast cancer, which are the two leading killers of women in Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America.
In her remarks, Mrs. Kagame urged stakeholders to impose their influence as maternal and child health advocates, to accelerate action towards improving women and children’s health.
“I come from a part of the world where women’s health has been neglected for too long, yet much is expected from women.
Women’s health is a fundamental right, but it is shocking that we still need to convince the world of this,” she told the delegates, who included former US President and First Lady, George and Laura Bush.
“We have to be more attentive to such issues and create integrated systems to cater for women’s health and create enabling environments where they can openly come forward to address diseases, most of which are preventable, that attack their intimacy”.
In his remarks, Bush stated that: "It is time to take the next step in building on the progress that has been made over the past decade in the fight against HIV and AIDS. Many women who seek AIDS services also face the challenge of cancer.
“It’s not enough to save a woman from AIDS, if she is then left to die of another very preventable disease,” he said.
Other speakers included Former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Nancy G. Brinker, Founder and CEO of the Susan G. Komen for the Cure and Professor Awa Marie Coll‐Seck, Executive Director of Roll Back Malaria Partnership, amongst others.