World Malaria Day: ADRA is Making a Difference

SILVER SPRING, Md. – April 25 marks World Malaria Day, a day set aside to commemorate worldwide efforts to control this preventable yet deadly disease. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) is continuing its work to reduce the numbers of people infected and killed by malaria every year worldwide.

This year’s theme for World Malaria Day, “Sustain Gains, Save Lives: Invest in Malaria,” communicates the notion that investments towards malaria control efforts remain vital if malaria is to be successfully eradicated.

“Since 2004, Malaria deaths have declined by nearly a third,” said United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. “Yet malaria remains a leading killer, and continues to suck the lifeblood of economies around the world. At this critical juncture we must intensify our efforts to defeat this disease,” Ki-moon added.

In efforts towards eliminating malaria-related deaths, ADRA develops projects with a focus of mobilizing entire communities. These projects offer training courses for community leaders on methods and techniques to achieve a malaria-free environment. The leaders then share the life-saving techniques to others in their community, equipping them with the knowledge on how to protect themselves, and their children, from contracting the disease.

“ADRA remains dedicated in our efforts towards reducing malaria-related deaths, and because of our commitment to this cause, we believe this goal can be achieved,” said Sonya Funna Evelyn, Senior Technical Advisor for Health at ADRA International.  “Through strategic partnerships, and a focus on providing capacity-building support, medication, and bed nets, ADRA is able to address the challenges of malaria, and ultimately work towards its eradication.”

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), infected mosquitoes are known to predominantly bite between dusk and dawn.  ADRA distributes mosquito nets that have proven to be a simple, yet highly effective preventable measure easily employed by beneficiaries. The nets act as an effective barrier between mosquitoes carrying the disease and the human host reducing the level of exposure to possible infection.

According to the WHO, statistics state that since 2000 malaria mortality rates have fallen globally by more than 25 percent, and have fallen by 33 percent in the Africa. Although noteworthy progress has been made in eliminating malaria, it remains a dangerous killer, taking the lives of an estimated 650,000 people in 2010. In addition, most deaths occur among children living in Africa where the disease claims the life of one child every 60 seconds.

“The great advances of recent years show that this battle can be won. It is time to finish the job. Success is too close, and the cost of failure too great,” said Ki-moon.

April 25 was originally declared Africa Malaria Day in 2000, but in 2008, World Malaria Day was also launched on April 25 to commemorate the work done around the world to control the deadly disease.

To learn more about ADRA’s life-changing work, please contact ADRA at 1.800.424.ADRA (2372) or give online at www.adra.org

Follow ADRA on Twitter and Facebook to get the latest information as it happens.

ADRA is a global non-governmental organization providing sustainable community development and disaster relief without regard to political or religious association, age, gender, race or ethnicity.

For more information about ADRA, visit www.adra.org