18 June, 2007 22:47

Elton John: "That was the one of the most memorable concerts!"

Today Sir Elton John appeals to Ukrainians with the gratitude for the warm welcome and solidarity in the fight against AIDS. "I want to thank the people of Kyiv for their fantastic hospitality whilst I was there. It was without doubt one on of the most memorable concerts and fantastic locations that I have played. I was delighted to see so many dignitaries, politicians and fans turning out not only to support the concert but also to make a very public declaration of war on HIV and AIDS in Ukraine. Ignorance, stigma and prejudice are the greatest barriers in this battle. Over 200,000 people came out to show unity against the disease and to support the efforts of the Elton John AIDS Foundation and the Elena Pinchuk Foundation. I commit to continue our work in the Ukraine. Together we can make a difference. Thank you Kyiv".
Elton John: "That was the one of the most memorable concerts!" / Elena Pinchuk Foundation

"Novy Channel" audience also drew great attention to Elton John concert - during the live broadcast the audience share run up to 20%. That was the record for the channel. It means as the curtain fell the amount of TV viewers run up to 4 millions.

Before and during the concert 220 volunteers, mainly students, disseminated 60 thousands flayers about HIV/AIDS, 150 thousands flayers with the information about testing and counseling centers, provided by Kiev AIDS Center, and 49 thousands condoms, provided by TM DUREX.  Along with volunteers number of Ukrainian celebrities agreed to participate in condoms distribution.

Elton John and his band were inspired by Ukrainians’ enthusiasm. As musicians told to ANTIAIDS Foundation staff they were most impressed with the crowd size: “That was unbelievable inspiring moment.”

Elena Pinchuk strongly believes that Elton John’ concert will help to change dramatically attitude of Ukrainians towards AIDS problem: “I’m happy that people enjoyed brilliant and emotional performance of Sir Elton. I hope that thousands of Ukrainians will remember this concert for all their lives. And I believe they won’t forget the main goal of the concert. I expect that every time when somebody thinks about the concert, they would automatically remember that protecting themselves they protect others. We should not be scared – we should care about ourselves. Now the whole country is talking about AIDS. That means we gained the first victory over epidemic.”

Elton John in his turn demonstrated strong commitment to the fight against AIDS in Ukraine: “I’m glad I can spread love and make people happy. I want HIV-positive people to live the full life. I know there are thousands of HIV-positive people in Ukraine, most people even don’t know about their status and continue to spread the virus. I’m sure Ukraine needs our help and support. I promise you to dedicate my time and resources of my foundation to the fight against AIDS in Ukraine. AIDS is the problem we can not ignore anymore. Let’s face the epidemic, let’s accept we are all at risk, let’s show love, hope and support to those who are already living with HIV. Together we can stop AIDS!” – Legendary singer and composer stated during his visit in Ukraine.

By the end of June, 19 concert’ guests donated more than 100,000 USD to ANTIAIDS Foundation. This is not a final sum as money continue to flow on ANTIAIDS’ accounts.

ANTIAIDS Foundation will direct all collected money to HIV/AIDS projects and direct help to people leaving with HIV/AIDS.

The new project of Elton John AIDS Foundation is launching in the nearest future under support of Elena Pinchuk ANTIAIDS Foundation. 2,5 million dollars pledged for this project by the ANTIAIDS Foundation will be spent for the programs to help Ukrainian HIV-infected children, and first of all to the orphans: “We strive for loving family for every child that became a victim of the AIDS epidemic. Besides, we have to teach HIV-positive people to live with their status, to live complete life. From the other hand, community has to accept such children as the full members of the society – not reject, but support. Elton John AIDS Foundation accumulated great experience in this field. We can’t stay indifferent to AIDS and HIV-positive people. Such behavior breaks the lives and helps to spread the virus.  Indifference means participation.” – Elena Pinchuk said.

The concert was supported by Kiev City Administration, Kiev Police Administration, Kiev AIDS Center, “Boris” clinic, TM ‘’DUREX”, TV Channels “Novy Channel”, ICTV, STB, M1 and radio HIT FM.

Elton John AIDS Foundation (www.ejaf.org)
The Elton John AIDS Foundation (UK) is an international non-profit organisation funding direct patient care services that help to alleviate the physical, emotional and financial hardship for those living with HIV/AIDS as well as AIDS education. During the past fourteen years, the EJAF has raised over US$85 million and supported over 4000 projects in 55 countries worldwide including the Ukraine, Russia, Romania, India, Bangladesh, Cambodia and South Africa. Over 12 million people have been assisted.

For detailed information, please, contact Olga Rudneva, Executive Director, Elena Pinchuk ANTIAIDS Foundation on E-mail:O.Rudneva@antiaids.org. Contact phone number: +38 (044) 490 4805.

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