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UNICEF Executive Director participates in White House Summit on Malaria

Washington D.C, 14 December 2006 - UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman, WHO Director-General Elect, Margaret Chan, World Bank President Paul Wolfowitz and other partners will participate in the White House Summit on Malaria hosted by President and Mrs. Bush today in Washington D.C.

The White House Summit on Malaria will discuss three themes: The Challenge of Malaria in Africa, the Power of Public/Private Partnerships: and Growing the Grassroots.

The Summit, focusing on Africa, brings together international experts, corporations and foundations, African civic leaders and faith-based organizations to raise awareness of the issue of malaria. It aims to mobilize a grassroots effort to save lives in Africa, giving the continent’s children the chance to survive and thrive.

A child dies of malaria every 30 seconds in Africa. At least one million infants and children under five in sub-Saharan Africa die each year from the mosquito-borne disease. While it is one of the greatest threats to human and economic welfare on earth, malaria is both preventable and treatable if addressed properly and quickly. Defeating malaria is an achievable and affordable goal, with bed nets to protect children against the disease costing less than $10.

“Reversing the spread of malaria is crucial for the survival, health, and development of children, especially in Africa,” said Ann M. Veneman. “Reducing the incidence of malaria will help achieve the Millennium Development Goals.”

The Summit will highlight the many organizations at work in the fight against malaria, including Malaria No More, which is helping to mobilize private sector support. Malaria No More is a non-profit organization that is challenging corporations and foundations, non-governmental and non-profit organizations, individuals and young people to save lives and build a bridge among peoples.

UNICEF is a founding member of Malaria No More. Other partners include the American Red Cross, the United Nations Foundation, The Global Business Coalition, Millennium Promise, United Way of America and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria. Malaria No More will provide resources for UNICEF to purchase and distribute bed nets and life saving drugs for people who need them.

In June 2005, President Bush announced the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), a five-year, $1.2 billion programme that challenges the private sector to join the U.S. Government in combating malaria in 15 of the hardest-hit countries in Africa. The initiative aims to cut malaria-related deaths by 50 per cent in these countries.

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About UNICEF
For 60 years UNICEF has been the world’s leader for children, working on the ground in 156 countries and territories to help children survive and thrive, from early childhood through adolescence.  The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS.  UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.

For more information:

Angela Hawke, UNICEF New York (+1 212) 326 7269. ahawke@unicef.org

Office of Mrs. Bush (+1 202) 456 6313

UNICEF website: http://www.unicef.org

Malaria No More website: http://www.malariaNOMORE.org

US Fund for UNICEF website: http://www.unicefusa.org

To view a webcast of the Summit, visit: http://www.fightingmalaria.gov


 

 

 

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