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Global Problems Can be Solved

Washington, DC Community Leaders Commit to Send 10,000 Anti-Malarial Bed Nets to Refugees in Africa

Councilman Jack Evans proclaims it Nothing But Nets Week in DC; Michelle Fenty recognizes all-star youth supporters

Washington, DC —   June 16, 2009

During a public rally today, co-hosted by the United Nations Foundation and its Nothing But Nets campaign, Councilman Jack Evans officially proclaimed June 13-June 23, 2009 “Nothing But Nets Week” in the District of Columbia. Also at the event, DC’s First Lady Mrs. Michelle Fenty recognized local youth for their commitment to Nothing But Nets – a global, grassroots campaign to prevent malaria – and commended the young supporters for becoming global citizens. The rally brought together a variety of local leaders and community members to announce DC’s commitment to send 10,000 long-lasting insecticide-treated bed nets to protect displaced families in Africa, where malaria is the number one killer of refugees.  
 
“As we near World Refugee Day on June 20, I am proud to see my fellow Washingtonians join the effort to prevent malaria among one of the world’s most vulnerable populations,” said DC Councilman Jack Evans. “Leaders can step forward, but it is the work of everyday citizens that has the power to make a significant difference in addressing global challenges like malaria.”

Over one million refugees in Africa have been displaced due to the spreading crisis in Darfur and other regional conflicts. Due to inadequate shelter, unsanitary living conditions and lack of medical care and supplies, refugees are particularly susceptible to contracting malaria and dying from the disease. This year, in partnership with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), Nothing But Nets is committed to sending nets to refugees in camps throughout Africa.

“In Uganda, where I helped distribute nets to refugees, I saw first-hand how these life-saving bed nets provide hope to parents who are struggling to keep their children safe,” said Elizabeth Gore, executive director of Nothing But Nets. “For just $10, an individual can help to keep a young refugee safe from malaria-carrying mosquitoes while they sleep."

To date, Nothing But Nets has successfully distributed more than 275,000 bed nets to cover families in Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya and Sudan.  To fulfill the complete need, an additional 346,000 life-saving nets are still needed.

Throughout the week, from June 13-23, 2009 Nothing But Nets will join local DC partners: The United Methodist Church; Exxon Mobil; Orkin, Inc.; the Washington Mystics; D.C. United; the Washington Wizards; the Union for Reform Judaism; the Washington Kastles; and the Washington Bayhawks, to excite and engage the local community in this global effort to protect the millions of refugees in Africa with life-saving bed nets.  

To learn more, visit www.NothingButNets.net.

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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 columnist Rick Reilly, tens of thousands of people have joined the campaign that was created by the United Nations Foundation in 2006. Founding campaign partners include the National Basketball Association’s NBA Cares, the people of The United Methodist Church, and Sports Illustrated. It costs just $10 to provide a long-lasting insecticide-treated bed net to prevent this deadly disease. Visit www.NothingButNets.net to send a net and save a life.

To date, Nothing But Nets has raised more than $27 million and distributed over 2.5 million nets to children and families in Africa. One bed net can protect a family of four for up to five years.

Press Contact:

Ingrid Madden, United Nations Foundation
(o) 202.887.9040 (e) imadden@unfoundation.org

 
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