NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwired - Mar 30, 2016) - Last Thursday (March 24, 2016), JCI announced that it will help the United Nations Foundation's Nothing But Nets campaign provide 30,000 life-saving bed nets for refugees in Africa, protecting families from malaria. JCI will activate its more than 200,000 members across the country and around the world to raise the funds, create awareness, and advocate this year, the second and final year of The Million Nets Pledge. If the funds are raised, it will unlock a match from Nothing But Nets partner Sumitomo Chemical Company, doubling the amount of nets to 60,000 to help protect more refugees from malaria.
"Every two minutes, a child dies from malaria," said Paschal Dike, 2016 JCI President. "We are committed to working with Nothing But Nets to lead the generation that defeats malaria once and for all."
This monumental commitment comes as leaders recently returned from Cameroon with Nothing But Nets where they learned about the impact of malaria first hand and met with partners working in the region. Nothing But Nets works closely with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) to provide bed nets and other malaria interventions for refugees and people displaced by conflict. In addition, the campaign advocates for strong leadership and funding for The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, which provides over half of all international funding to fight malaria.
Recently, The Global Fund facilitated a national campaign to distribute 15.8 million nets, working to achieve universal coverage in Cameroon. Nets from this distribution have been circulated to almost every region of the country.
"Malaria is a leading cause of death in Cameroon," said Arrey Obenson, JCI Secretary General. "I grew up here -- it's a devastating disease. We can help Nothing But Nets save thousands of lives right now."
For the past seven years, JCI has been an instrumental partner to Nothing But Nets, helping to raise close to $3.5 million to protect refugees and families from malaria in sub-Saharan Africa. Over the course of its partnership, the world has made tremendous strides to defeat malaria -- reducing child deaths in sub-Saharan Africa by 71% since 2000. The UN estimates that more than 6.2 million lives have been saved since 2000, and the targets for Millennium Development Goal 6 have been met or surpassed. The UN and global leaders now seek to reduce cases and deaths from malaria worldwide by 90% and to eliminate malaria in at least 35 countries by 2030.
"JCI is one of our most passionate and dedicated partners and I'm thrilled by this renewed commitment to help us protect those most vulnerable from malaria," said Chris Helfrich, Director of Nothing But Nets. "Our partners help us make the biggest impact -- only together can we truly defeat this disease for good."
Today, there are tens of millions of refugees and families displaced by violence around the world -- and 60 percent of them live in areas where malaria is transmitted. Malaria is a major threat to refugees -- it is a leading cause of illness and death in many African countries, including those where Nothing But Nets and its UN partners work. Last year, Nothing But Nets launched The Million Nets Pledge, a commitment to protect refugee families from malaria with one million bed nets by 2016. This ambitious two-year goal aims to raise $10 million to protect vulnerable people fleeing violence, particularly in Central Africa. At a special United Nations event in September, Sumitomo Chemical Co. issued a matching grant challenge to Nothing But Nets supporters and partners who donate to The Million Nets Pledge.
The Nothing But Nets campaign boasts hundreds of thousands of supporters -- from students to athletes to entertainers -- who all help to protect families on another continent from the threat of malaria. Anyone can join The Million Nets Pledge and help to send one million nets to protect refugee families from malaria. JCI members can go to www.NothingButNets.net/JCI to donate and help save lives.
About JCI (Junior Chamber International)
JCI is a worldwide membership-based nonprofit organization of young active citizens ages 18 to 40 who are dedicated to creating positive change in their communities. Through projects in more than 5000 communities across nearly 120 countries, members seek targeted solutions to local problems, creating a global impact.
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.
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