AdvisorShares Congratulates Dr. Denis Mukwege on Nobel Peace Prize

AdvisorShares would like to congratulate Dr. Denis Mukwege and Nadia Murad on their recent awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize for 2018. Dr. Mukwege and Ms. Murad were recognized for their efforts to end the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war and armed conflict.

AdvisorShares has always strived to provide a value add for our ETF shareholders and prospective investors. We have offered a number of innovative investment strategies and active ETF industry firsts, partnered with widely-accomplished portfolio managers and have witnessed our fair share of successes and occasional misfortunes throughout our company history.  

One of our proudest company achievements came through our partnership with explorer and environmental advocate Philippe Cousteau on the AdvisorShares Global Echo ETF (GIVE), which provided an incredibly unique and innovative dual impact mandate through sustainable investments and philanthropic contributions. A fractional portion of the ETF’s assets were contributed to philanthropic initiatives directed by Philippe and his charitable foundation. A huge success of the Global Echo ETF was a charitable contribution made to the Panzi Hospital, a hospital founded and directed by Dr. Mukwege that is dedicated to the care and empowerment of women and their children in the conflict-ridden Eastern Congo.  In a July 2015 interview with the Green Money Journal, Philippe described this philanthropic grant and its impact:

“The Panzi Hospital in the Eastern Congo represents a great match for the GlobalECHO Foundation’s goals. We recognized there was an important opportunity to support an organization, which helps rebuild the lives of women who have survived sexual violence, and provides maternity care and education in a part of the world that desperately needs it. The heartbreaking and inspiring story of Furaha and her six year old daughter illustrate the power of investing in projects like the Panzi Hospital. Furaha and her young daughter suffered a brutal gang rape that left them physically and psychologically scarred, infected with HIV/AIDS, and with few options to support themselves as Furaha’s husband was also murdered in the attack. Through the work of the Panzi Hospital and the Panzi Foundation, Furaha and her daughter were not only given comprehensive medical and psychological treatment, but Furaha was also provided with a modest micro-loan to invest in a business and her daughter now has guaranteed enrollment in a local school. Today, Furaha has a successful business, which enabled her to purchase land and a home for her and her daughter. The GlobalECHO Foundation and GIVE have supported the installation of solar panels for the hospital laboratory, which are now driving clean, renewable, affordable – essentially free – energy to the facility to replace a very expensive, conflict-ridden dirty fuel that has traditionally powered it. In so doing, we’re saving the hospital money so they can serve their patients better and treat more women and children like Furaha and her daughter, thus building a healthier and more resilient community; we’re also helping to reduce pollution in the community because they’re not using fossil fuels; and the project has become a green jobs initiative that provides training jobs in sustainable energy systems for people in the community. It’s tremendous to see this success based off GIVE, and fundamentally, recognizing that this model can be a successful one and represents an exciting example for the future. As we continue to grow, we look forward to adding more projects like the Panzi Hospital to our philanthropic portfolio.”

The work of Dr. Mukwege, the Panzi Hospital and the Panzi Foundation is truly significant and an inspiration for the rest of the world.  AdvisorShares once had the honor of sponsoring a screening of “The Man Who Mends Women” – a documentary about Dr. Mukwege – in Washington, D.C. a few years ago where Dr. Mukwege was present to candidly discuss the incredible achievements and dangerous challenges that he faced for dedicating his life for the betterment of others. It was a remarkable evening. 

Unfortunately, the Global Echo ETF no longer trades but we’re thankful and grateful for the lasting impact that it made. Giving back and making an impact has always been and always will be a fabric of the AdvisorShares culture. 

For more information on the Panzi Hospital and Panzi Foundation, please visit Congratulations, Dr. Mukwege.