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Imagine No Malaria provides $2 million for Sierra Leone net distribution


United Methodist Communications
Office of Public Information
810 12th Avenue S.
Nashville, TN 37203

June 10, 2010

Nashville, Tenn.: Through Imagine No Malaria, a tangible expression of the Global Health Initiative, the people of The United Methodist Church have committed $2 million to distribute long-lasting insecticide-treated mosquito nets in Sierra Leone, where malaria is a leading cause of death.

The November 2010 distribution of 2.5 to 3 million nets will provide almost every household with three nets per family. Additionally, an integrated health program will reach 95 percent of Sierra Leone's children with Vitamin A supplements and treatments for intestinal worms.

"It's astounding that with our partners, we will help to protect an entire country's vulnerable population from malaria and other diseases of poverty," said Bishop Thomas Bickerton, chairperson of The United Methodist Church's Global Health Initiative.

Partners in the program include the Ministry of Health and Sanitation (National Malaria Program) of Sierra Leone, the International Federation of the Red Crescent and Red Cross Societies (IFRC), the Association of African Leaders, and the United Nations Foundation. Doctors without Borders and CARE are also new partners in this initiative.

The United Methodist Church's health system in Sierra Leone, particularly its network of birth attendants in rural clinics, will participate as community educators and as part of the follow-up measurement and evaluation team.

Staff from the United Methodist Committee on Reliefwill travel to Freetown, Sierra Leone over the next months to meet with the National Malaria Partnership officers and receive an update on the development of the November 2010 Campaign Action Plan.

The initiative to distribute bed nets nationwide in Sierra Leone was announced on the eve of World Malaria day in 2009 at the One World Against Malaria Summit in Washington, DC. The event brought together global and U.S. faith leaders, high-profile political officials, global health leaders, and senior representatives from the United Nations and international institutions to focus on working in partnership to eliminate deaths from malaria by 2015.

About Imagine No Malaria
Imagine No Malaria is an extraordinary ministry of the people of The United Methodist Church to eliminate death and suffering from malaria in Africa by 2015. With a goal of raising $75 million to improve health infrastructure and empower a sustainable victory over the disease, Imagine No Malaria is our opportunity to rethink how we reach beyond our church, opening doors to those who need it most. For more information, please visit us online at

Media Contact: Diane Degnan
(615) 742-5406 (office)
(615) 483-1765 (cell)