Last year, the United Nations Foundation’s Nothing But Nets campaign launched The Million Nets Pledge, a special two-year commitment to send 1 million nets and other solutions to stop malaria to the most vulnerable families in sub-Saharan Africa by the end of this year.
I am proud to share that we have passed the halfway mark in less than a year since launching the commitment! Thanks to dedicated partners and new supporters who have joined the movement, we have raised funds to deliver more than 500,000 nets to refugee families in need.
The Million Nets Pledge reflects our ongoing commitment to achieve the United Nations-led Sustainable Development Goals and to support the concerted worldwide efforts to end malaria within a generation. The most recent World Health Organization report on malaria shows the progress that has been made thanks to global efforts to fight the disease:
- 6.2 million lives have been saved since 2000; and
- Deaths among children under 5 in Africa have decreased 71%.
This progress is incredible, but we must double down on our commitment now more than ever.
Malaria still claims the life of a child every two minutes, and that needs to change. Our efforts can’t stop now to send nets and advocate so that our leaders ensure necessary funds are invested to fight malaria.
When I meet with supporters, I often get asked how we decide where to provide nets. We look at three inter-related factors:
Where is the need greatest? Where are the most people getting sick from malaria and where are the most deaths resulting from this terrible disease?
Where is our greatest opportunity to have an immediate impact? With respect to logistics and other factors on the ground, where can we quickly act to start saving lives?
Where can we make progress toward ending malaria? Our ultimate goal is to put ourselves out of business by stopping malaria in sub-Saharan Africa and around the world. As we reach universal net coverage and control malaria-carrying mosquitoes in a region, we stop the spread of the disease much like what happened in the southern United States in the last century.
The countries outlined below meet these requirements and outline our priorities for 2016. As we near World Malaria Day on April 25, every gift made will be tripled to help further our commitment to fulfill The Million Nets Pledge. To join us, please consider sending a life-saving net and seeing your impact tripled. I’m so grateful for your support; Together, we can defeat malaria.
Editor’s Note: This post originally appeared on the Nothing But Nets website.