Focus: Corporate Responsibility - Side by side - British Red Cross and GlaxoSmithKline

GlaxoSmithKline has provided financial support to the British Red Cross for more than ten years. Two partnerships dominate: a peer-led HIV/Aids prevention and care programme in China, and Gateway, a service that helps young disabled people in Irvine, Scotland, make the transition to adulthood.

TOM MARSHALL, SENIOR CORPORATE PARTNERSHIPS EXECUTIVE, BRITISH RED CROSS

Why did you choose this partnership?

There is real synergy between our objectives. GSK is committed to the battle against HIV and Aids and puts millions of pounds into developing HIV drugs.

How do you benefit from it?

The funds allowed us to expand our work with HIV/Aids in China and social inclusion in Scotland.

Did you have any reservations and how were they overcome?

We were concerned that the stigma surrounding HIV/Aids in China might limit the project's expansion, but the partnership built a united front, resulting in local media publishing articles on stigma and discrimination.

What are your plans for the partnership?

We aim to use both the Gateway project and our work in China as models to expand and replicate our work in other areas.

CLAIRE HITCHCOCK, DIRECTOR, EUROPE AND INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS, GLAXOSMITHKLINE

Why did you choose this partnership?

China is one of our priority markets. HIV is a big problem there. We invited proposals but, as we already worked with the Red Cross on disaster response, it was an obvious candidate.

How do you benefit from it?

The Red Cross network reflects GSK in its global reach. We have shared goals with the Red Cross to improve healthcare.

Did you have any reservations and how were they overcome?

We were going into the unknown. China can be a very difficult country to work in, so we needed to show we were working together to gain trust.

What are your plans for the partnership?

We've just renewed funding for a three-year Red Cross project in Scotland.

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