Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte announced today she has joined the Bloomberg Philanthropies Partnership for Healthy Cities Global Leadership Series, a weekly virtual convening of city leaders from around the world who are mobilizing their municipalities to respond to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

Each week, mayors and public health officials come together to hear the latest science on COVID-19, share how they are mounting a response to maximize their city’s safety and operations during the crisis and exchange policy ideas with each other.

“Mayors around the world are vitally important to the global COVID-19 response.”

“Cities can change the course of this pandemic by sharing strategies and implementing the essential measures needed to address the crisis,” said Mayor Belmonte.

“Keeping our cities moving while keeping people safe is a challenge we all share. Through these convenings, Quezon City is able to access the top global expertise on COVID-19. We also benefit from the knowledge and experience of our peers worldwide, many of whom have already endured multiple stages of the pandemic.”

The Partnership for Healthy Cities, a global network of 70 cities, previously focused on preventing noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) and injuries. It is now broadening its scope and taking up the urgency of the pandemic by building on existing ties with city leaders to confront COVID-19. Since 2017, the Partnership has been supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies and works in partnership with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the global health organization Vital Strategies.

The Partnership is providing practical resources and tools geared toward challenges every city is likely to face, ranging from maintaining city services—such as food and water supply, police and fire response units—to implementing legal guidance on measures that protect health and safety.

The Partnership’s expansion to COVID-19 support is part of the Bloomberg Philanthropies COVID-19 Response Initiatives, launched in March to support immediate action to prevent or slow the spread of COVID-19 around the globe. Working with WHO and Resolve to Save Lives, another Vital Strategies initiative, the $40 million initiative supports the WHO COVID-19

Solidarity Response Fund; assists efforts to track and study the spread of the virus and accelerate the development of treatments, vaccines and tests; and offers guidance on preventative measures for the general public.

“Mayors around the world are vitally important to the global COVID-19 response,” said Kelly Henning, head of Bloomberg Philanthropies’ public health programs. “The pandemic is hitting cities hardest, making it essential to get expert support to mayors and city leaders, quickly. The Bloomberg Philanthropies Partnership for Healthy Cities Global Leadership Series addresses this challenge head-on.”

“Cities are facing unprecedented challenges with the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Adam Karpati, Senior Vice President, Public Health Programs at Vital Strategies. “They bear the greatest burden but also are bringing creativity and compassion to solving problems. We are committed to helping mayors, city governments and civil society use all the best public health tools to protect their communities.”


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