Today, at the United Nations Foundation’s Nothing But Nets Champion Summit, President Obama’s National Security Advisor, Ambassador Susan Rice, announced the Administration’s plans to leverage increased malaria funding by expanding the President’s Malaria Initiative’s (PMI) work in six countries. The announcement came in front of more than 125 youth and advocates from 26 states who have convened in Washington, D.C. to learn the necessary skills to become the next generation of grassroots leaders in the fight to defeat malaria.
“Beating diseases like malaria is not only the right thing to do, it is also the smart thing to do – for our common security,” said Ambassador Rice.
Recently in his final State of the Union address, President Barack Obama called to end the scourge of malaria and urged Congress to increase funding. President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2017 Budget Request called for $874 million for PMI, a $200 million increase, and $1.35 billion in vital funding for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
With the support of Congress, the $200 million increase for PMI will mean the program can expand to three new countries—Sierra Leone, Cote d’Ivoire, and Cameroon—and expand its existing program in Burkina Faso. It would also mean launching an effort to eliminate malaria in Zambia and Cambodia, in partnership with host governments, NGOs, and other partners. The funding would help to provide nearly 14 million more bed nets—and ensure that over 27 million people in sub-Saharan Africa are protected from malaria. Finally, working with both public and private sector researchers, PMI will accelerate the research, development, and evaluation of new tools to combat malaria.
“We are grateful to Ambassador Rice and the Administration for extraordinary leadership in the fight against malaria,” said Rear Admiral Timothy Ziemer, U.S. Global Malaria Coordinator. “I hope that we will continue to see bipartisan support from Congress on this important issue.”
Tomorrow, Nothing But Nets Champions will take the Administration’s message to Capitol Hill to meet with their elected leaders advocating for the continued crucial funding of PMI and The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
“Over the last two days, Nothing But Nets Champions have repeatedly reminded me of the power of this campaign – it doesn’t matter if you’re a student, a CEO, or a celebrity athlete, anyone can make a difference,” said Chris Helfrich, director of Nothing But Nets. “We have the largest grassroots constituency working to defeat malaria – and they are passionate about raising their voices to end this disease for good.”
Yesterday, soccer star Abby Wambach addressed Nothing But Nets Champions, imploring them to let their passion to end malaria fuel their efforts and make their voices heard. And she spoke passionately about her own efforts to ensure equality for all.
“How much does it cost to treat someone equally? Zero. I am going to work until I’m gone from this planet to ensure that everyone is treated equally,” said Wambach.
Other Summit speakers included Kelly T. Clements, Deputy High Commissioner for Refugees, UNHCR; Alan Court, Senior Advisor, UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Financing the Health Millennium Development Goals and for Malaria; and Thon Moses Chol, refugee advocate and malaria survivor.
Every two minutes, a child dies from malaria. Nothing But Nets is the world’s largest grassroots campaign fighting this disease caused by a single mosquito bite. Now in its tenth year, the campaign has raised $60 million and delivered nearly ten million nets through its UN partners to protect refugees and families across sub-Saharan Africa from malaria. Since 2000, there has been incredible progress made to defeat the disease – more than 6.2 million lives have been saved, and child mortality rates have decreased 71% in sub-Saharan Africa. To learn more and get involved, visit www.NothingButNets.net.
To view the Ambassador’s full remarks, visit http://1.usa.gov/1KF3kLB.
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Communications Manager, Nothing But Nets
About Nothing But Nets
Now in its tenth year, Nothing But Nets is the world’s largest, grassroots campaign to save lives by preventing malaria, a disease which claims the life of a child every two minutes. Inspired by sports columnist Rick Reilly, hundreds of thousands of people have joined the campaign that was created by the United Nations Foundation in 2006. Nothing But Nets has raised $60 million to help deliver nearly ten million bed nets to families in need, along with other crucial malaria interventions. In addition to raising funds for its UN partners, Nothing But Nets raises awareness and voices to advocate for critical malaria funding for the U.S. President’s Malaria Initiative and The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. It only costs $10 to help save lives from this deadly disease. Visit www.NothingButNets.net to defeat malaria.
About The United Nations Foundation
The United Nations Foundation builds public-private partnerships to address the world’s most pressing problems, and broadens support for the United Nations through advocacy and public outreach. Through innovative campaigns and initiatives, the Foundation connects people, ideas, and resources to help the UN solve global problems. The Foundation was created in 1998 as a U.S. public charity by entrepreneur and philanthropist Ted Turner and now is supported by global corporations, foundations, governments, and individuals. For more information, visit www.unfoundation.org.