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Imagine No Malaria to meet with Congress

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 30, 2012

Advocates to urge Capitol Hill to continue global health funding

Nashville, Tenn. — More than 100 Imagine No Malaria advocates, including United Methodist members from 29 states, 40 annual conferences and five participants from Africa, will meet with members of Congress on December 3-4 during a "Days on the Hill" gathering in Washington, D.C. to urge continued global health funding.

"The future of Congressional funding to global health, including to fight malaria, is in jeopardy," said Bishop Thomas Bickerton, who chairs the United Methodist Global Health Initiative. "The U.S. has been the world leader in global health aid, inspiring other countries to step up their support. To cut this critical funding would mean unnecessary suffering and loss of life from this preventable disease."

Teams representing more than 40 annual conferences will attend, including those from fifteen vanguard annual conferences that have made a commitment to support Imagine No Malaria by planning activities and raising funds. These vanguard conferences include Arkansas, Baltimore-Washington, California-Nevada, Dakotas, Desert Southwest, Great Northwest, Holston, Iowa, Kansas East, Kansas West, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, Rocky Mountain and Yellowstone.

The gathering will open Monday morning with worship led by Bishop Bickerton. Additionally, Monday's activities include an overview of the Imagine No Malaria advocacy initiative, a presentation on effective messaging by Mike McCurry, former press secretary for President Bill Clinton, and a presentation about the current state of global health funding from Peter Yeo of the United Nations Foundation.

On Tuesday, teams will visit their respective Senators' and U.S. Representatives' offices. Closing worship will be led by Bishop Robert T. Hoshibata.

The event will be held at the same time Imagine No Malaria celebrates that more than 1.2 million nets have been delivered, well ahead of the goal of one million by year's end. More than 9,000 nets were delivered in Angola in October, and 22,000 will be distributed in Zimbabwe in December.

For more information, visit Imagine No Malaria.org and follow the action on INM's Facebook page and on Twitter.

Media contact:
Diane Degnan
ddegnan@umcom.org
615-742-5406 (office)
615-483-1765 (cell)