Stephen Fry: People can make a difference and save lives

It would be an injustice if anyone thought Elton's foundation was a rock star vanity project

Share
Related Topics

In 2008 I was filming gorillas in the marvellously named Bwindi Impenetrable Forest. I met a young English doctor, Paul Williams, and his wife Vicky. He told me about a hospital he was running just on the edge of Bwindi village. It all sounded so intriguing that I asked if I could visit.

I found that Paul had picked up on the work of the original founder and created a quite magnificent community hospital. HIV, malaria and highly resistant forms of TB are triple killers in this part of the world and Paul set about tackling each of these threats with a combination of sensitivity, science and dogged persistence.

From miles and miles around the people came as he and the hospital earned more trust and a growing reputation. From the moment I met Paul and Vicky Williams and saw the work they were doing I determined to help in any way I could and have been pleased to do a small amount. But it is nothing compared to the simply remarkable contribution of the Elton John Aids Foundation to Bwindi and to hundreds of projects like it, a contribution that makes a genuine and measurably transformative difference on the ground – a contribution that has saved and is saving thousands of lives.

It would be an injustice of the grossest kind if anyone thought EJAF some kind of rock star vanity project. It is one of the most serious, progressive and effective forces in the HIV/Aids sector worldwide. I include Britain in that. In my capacity as president of Friends for Life, the fundraising arm of the Terrence Higgins Trust, Europe's largest HIV/Aids charity, I know that we could not function as we do without generous and substantial grants from EJAF. As a charity it is one of the unsung heroes of the world. I am pleased to add my few words to its praise.

Click here to donate to HIV/Aids charity EJAF

React Now

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Graduate Media Assistant

Competitive (DOE): Guru Careers: We are looking for an ambitious and adaptable...

Guru Careers: Solutions Consultant

£30 - 40k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Solutions Consultan...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£30 - 35k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

Guru Careers: Software Engineer / Software Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software Engineer / Softw...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Election catch-up: Blairites for and against a Miliband victory

John Rentoul
Nicola Sturgeon could have considerable influence over David Cameron in a hung parliament  

General Election 2015: What if Cameron were to end up in debt to the SNP?

Steve Richards
Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before