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40,000 Life-Saving Anti-Malaria Nets Sent to Refugee Camps in Eastern Chad

Urgent Appeal from United Nations Foundation's Nothing But Nets Campaign Raises more than US$400,000 to Send Nets

Washington, DC —   August 27, 2007

Responding to an urgent and specific need in Eastern Chad, the United Nations Foundation’s Nothing But Nets
(www.NothingButNets.net) campaign is sending more than 40,000 bed nets to 15 temporary camps along the Chad-Sudan and Chad-Central African Republic border. The long-lasting insecticide-treated nets will help prevent the transmission of malaria among the 200,000 refugees and internally displaced people living in the camps due to the ongoing crisis in Darfur.

"We asked the tens of thousands of Nothing But Nets supporters to help us purchase and deliver nets to Chad—and they responded overwhelmingly in just three weeks," said Kathy Bushkin Calvin, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, United Nations Foundation.

Last month, the UN High Commission on Refugees, UNICEF, and the MENTOR Initiative—an NGO working on the ground in the region—recognized an emergency need and sought assistance from the United Nations Foundation to purchase and deliver nets before the height of the rainy season. Without the bed nets, it was estimated that 25 percent of those living in the camps could die from malaria.

“Many lives will be saved through this emergency campaign,” said Richard Allan, CEO of the MENTOR Initiative. “With so many Chadians forced into temporary camps and living under poor conditions, the delivery of these nets is vital to protecting Chadian families from the spread of malaria. As the rainy season approaches, the MENTOR initiative, in partnership with the United Nations, is responding to the crisis with an experienced team on the ground, ensuring that insecticide-treated nets reach those in greatest need as quickly as possible.”

Through a growing network of more than 60,000 individuals, Nothing But Nets—a grassroots effort to prevent malaria by delivering long-lasting insecticide-treated bed nets—raised more than US$400,000 to send the nets. The NBA’s Chicago Bulls, a local partner in the Nothing But Nets campaign, provided the first $10,000 for the emergency appeal. Humanity United, a social investment organization working to end slavery and mass atrocities, contributed a matching grant for all donations.

“I want to thank my team and all those who answered this urgent appeal,” said Chicago Bulls forward and Sudan native Luol Deng. “With your donations, you have prevented the unnecessary suffering of thousands.” Luol Deng is also a national spokesperson for Nothing But Nets.

A US$10 donation to Nothing But Nets covers the cost to purchase and distribute a net and educate a community health worker on its proper use.

While malaria has been eliminated in the United States, it still kills more than one million people each year—most of whom are children. Bed nets are one of the most cost-effective and simple methods of preventing the spread of the deadly disease. To donate, visit www.NothingButNets.net.

About Nothing But Nets

Nothing But Nets is a global, grassroots campaign to save lives by preventing malaria, a leading killer of children in Africa. Inspired by Sports Illustrated columnist Rick Reilly, thousands of people have joined the campaign that was created by the United Nations Foundation. Founding campaign partners include the National Basketball Association’s NBA Cares, the people of The United Methodist Church, and Sports Illustrated. Other partners include VH1, The Mark J. Gordon Foundation, AOL Black Voices, Major League Soccer’s MLS W.O.R.K.S., the Wasserman Foundation, the Women’s National Basketball Association’s WNBA Cares, and Rotarians’ Action Group on Malaria. It costs only $10 to provide an insecticide-treated bed net that can prevent this deadly disease. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation matches individual donations dollar for dollar.
Visit www.NothingButNets.net to send a net and save a life.

About the United Nations Foundation

The UN Foundation was created in 1998 with entrepreneur and philanthropist Ted Turner’s historic $1 billion gift to support UN causes and activities. The UN Foundation builds and implements public-private partnerships to address the world’s most pressing problems and also works to broaden support for the UN through advocacy and public outreach. The UN Foundation is a public charity.

Press contacts:

In Washington, D.C.:
Amy DiElsi
UN Foundation
(o) 202-419-3230, (c) 215-990-3006
(e) adielsi@unfoundation.org

Sarah Balch
(o) 202-572-2986, (c) 917-558-6676
(e) sarah.balch@gmmb.com

 
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