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UNAIDS
New UN-business website to bring about private sector

January 29, 2010
Business.un.org the new UN-business partnership gateway, was introduced today at the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting held in Davos, Switzerland. The website will provide a single entry point for to match the capacities and resources of the private sector with the needs of the UN System, be it for humanitarian relief, poverty reduction or HIV programmes.

The United Nations has long recognized that the private sector is a critical partner in addressing global challenges. And for companies willing to make a difference, the UN has the means and the reach to help sustain efforts on a global scale.

While many UN organisations have partnered with businesses for years, companies have frequently expressed frustration over the lack of a single interface describing UN needs across the multitude of specialized agencies, funds and programmes. The new platform aims to address offer companies a user-friendly process to share their resources and find appropriate partners.

According to Jan Beagle, UNAIDS Deputy Executive Director, the business sector is a key partner in the AIDS response. UNAIDS is works with the business sector to support the effectively delivery of HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services with the work place.

"The new UN-Business partnership platform is a uniquely positioned gateway to match the capacities and resources of the private sector with the needs of the AIDS response," said Ms Beagle.

Through workplace programmes on HIV, in-kind contribution as well as donations, many corporations have shouldered their social responsibility in the AIDS response. UNAIDS has supported the development of business coalitions with the key ambition to establish work place programmes for HIV prevention services, expand access to care and treatment, and support for workers within the work place as well as the wider community.

How business.un.org works

Using the new partnership gateway, businesses seeking to contribute to the UN's work can browse through a catalogue of available humanitarian needs and partnership opportunities, or simply submit ideas for collaboration. Based on shared characteristics, the site flags potential matches to be then connected directly.

The website also showcases examples of existing partnerships and provides operational guidelines to maximize the chance of success.

First launched on 14 January, business.un.org has quickly shown to be a useful mechanism to facilitate private-sector contributions to the humanitarian and development work of the United Nations.

Following the devastating earthquake in Haiti, businesses around the world have pledged both cash and in-kind contributions to support relief and redevelopment efforts in the Caribbean nation. Contributions offered through the portal include medical supplies, logistics support, food and water, shelter and communications equipment.

Business.un.org was developed as a collaborative effort of more than 20 UN agencies, funds and programmes. The site was designed and implemented by Global Hand, a Hong-Kong-based non-governmental organisation specialising in matching services for non-profit and for-profit organisations that partner to help a world in need. Project funding was provided by the UN Foundation. The new partnership gateway will be available in all six official UN languages by mid-2010.

Resources:

Related information:

Partnership with private sector - http://www.unaids.org/en/Partnerships/Private+sector/default.asp

Private sector partnerships - case studies - http://www.unaids.org/en/Partnerships/Private+sector/CaseStudy.as p

Partners:

United Nations - http://www.un.org/

Feature stories:

Public-private partnerships strengthen health systems and AIDS response (27 July 2009) - http://www.aegis.org/news/unaids/2009/UN090726.html

Business coalitions on AIDS strengthen the private sector response to AIDS in Asia (23 Nov 2009) - http://www.aegis.org/news/unaids/2009/UN091119.html

External links:

UN-business portal - http://business.un.org/en

Publications:

UNAIDS Guidelines for working in partnership with the Private Sector (pdf, 38.8 Kb.) - http://data.unaids.org/pub/Manual/2007/unaids_guidelines_august20 07_draft4_en.pdf

Partnerships with the Private Sector: A Collection of Case Studies from UNAIDS (pdf, 1.35 Mb.) - http://data.unaids.org/pub/Report/2007/unaids_private_sector_case _studies_en.pdf

www.aegis.org