Digital security vendors Avast have donated US$25 million to a range of organisations involved in the fight to find a vaccine that works against Covid-19.
According to a blog on the Avast website, the company has made contributions to the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and other donors, and to the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI). Donations will help accelerate treatments, and the containment of the disease through vaccines.
All donations were made through the Avast Foundation.
Avast CEO, Ondrej Vlcek, said in the blog: “Avast has always been driven by a mission to keep people safe, and we are deeply concerned about the escalation of the global COVID-19 health crisis. Over the last few months, our Avast colleagues worldwide have been volunteering their time and technical skills to support local community relief efforts and the Avast Foundation has donated funds to a number of important relief causes. And while I’m hugely grateful for these contributions and the enthusiasm and passion they are demonstrating, we felt that there was more that Avast could do to help.”
The post goes on to state that “After a careful analysis of existing programs and initiatives committed to COVID-19, we were encouraged to see that we’re not the only ones thinking this way. Namely, we found that Wellcome-coordinated COVID-Zero Coalition was very aligned with our vision and to that end, we have decided to join it and support its strategic focus.”
The COVID-Zero Coalition is focused on raising funds to enable a COVID-19 response through the pursuit of testing and treatments, and for preventing the spread of the virus through vaccine development. The Avast Foundation is donating $20 million to help accelerate its progress.
“We are contributing to two research and development initiatives referenced in the Coalition’s call to action: the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator for development of testing and treatments, and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) for the development of vaccines,” said Vlcek.
Of the total donation amount, the Avast Foundation is donating $12 million to the COVID-19 Therapeutics Accelerator, in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Wellcome and Mastercard, to accelerate the development of rapid testing and treatments.
The remaining $8 million will go to CEPI, the world’s leading organization in vaccine research and development for pandemics.