'Be the Change: Save a Life' With ABC News

ABC News embarks on yearlong global health series, 'Be the Change: Save a Life.'

ByABC News
October 5, 2010, 2:38 PM

Oct. 6, 2010— -- ABC News today announced a yearlong project to focus attention on the diseases and health conditions that disproportionately afflict the world's poorest people. The series, "Be the Change: Save a Life," will kick off in December and continue throughout 2011. Led by "World News" anchor Diane Sawyer and ABC News Chief Health and Medical Editor Dr. Richard Besser, the series will include reporting from all ABC News anchors across all broadcasts and platforms.

An ABC News website for "Be the Change: Save a Life" will be devoted to gathering stories, offering solutions, and acting as a clearing-house for people who want to know more, get involved, or volunteer.

ABC News will invest more than $4.5 million in the series, covering personnel and production. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is giving a $1.5 million grant that will specifically help fund overseas travel and foreign production costs. As with all reporting and sponsorships, ABC News has complete editorial control over the content of the series.

"We are, as always, committed to in-depth reporting on the global issues that matter to our audience -- and health is a topic that touches every human being in the world," said ABC News President David Westin. "Support from the Gates Foundation will help us, literally, go that extra mile; we can cover the stories that ABC News is passionate about, stories that will connect our American audience with the struggles and solutions of families and doctors all over the planet, from Africa to South America to Asia. And, even more important, we can offer people the opportunity to get involved and truly save a life."

A story may not be able to change the world, but it can inspire the world to change.

Inadequate newborn care, malaria, polio, HIV, tuberculosis and a lack of critical vaccines still kill millions of people in developing countries every year. Experts say these are real challenges, but there are also innovative, creative solutions that can save lives -- today.