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African-funded initiative to eliminate malaria launched

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African-funded initiative to eliminate malaria launched

9th October 2013

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Despite being completely preventable and treatable, malaria infects an estimated 219-million people around the world each year, killing about 655 000. Ninety per cent of all malaria deaths occur in Africa, where the disease costs the continent an estimated minimum $12-billion each year in lost productivity alone.

Six African countries (including Mozambique) account for 47% of malaria cases globally, and 86% of those deaths occur in children under five years of age, one child every 60 seconds.

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Despite tremendous advances in recent years, malaria continues to threaten the broader socio-economic development of the African continent and places a huge strain on health resources, communities and individuals across the continent.

In an effort to create a sustainable path to development for the African continent, including greater engagement of a variety of African sectors to increase investment in Africa by Africans, a group of African entrepreneurs have banded together to form Goodbye Malaria, which launches in Durban on October 10, alongside the 6th MIM Pan-African Malaria Conference.

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Goodbye Malaria’s goals include:

  • Support the elimination of malaria in Africa, starting in Mozambique with innovative financing through a social impact bond
  • The eradication of poverty by supporting African entrepreneurs
  • The improvement of local economies
  • Supporting Malaria advocacy – The Global Fund and Rollback Malaria, in creating a fresh voice for the malaria community

The group, which includes Nando's founder Robert Brozin, Sonhos Social Capital CEO Sherwin Charles and David Stern, is determined to eliminate malaria and support the goal of saving 4.2-million lives by 2015 in line with the achievement of the MDG goals.

“We’re creating a win-win-win situation, by providing African solutions to African challenges where Africa is doing it for herself," says Brozin.

The campaign benefits the Roll Back Malaria Partnership (RBM) and The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria by raising funds for malaria elimination in Africa, using a model that enables Africans to raise funds and advocate against malaria while simultaneously creating employment opportunities.

The group is calling for a show of unity from corporates and individuals on World Malaria Day (April 25, 2014) by calling on the world to wear “Goodbye Malaria" pyjamas to work.

“This might sound like a big ask, but the pyjamas, made of the softest cotton and in funky shweshwe fabric, are probably the most stylish and comfortable thing you’ll wear all year," says Charles.

These products are marketed to corporates and individuals in Africa and the global community. Using the slogan “Save a life in your sleep”, 50% of the proceeds from the sale of the Goodbye Malaria range go to The Global Fund for investment in African malaria programmes.

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