Health
 Uganda
Project #6826

Protect 32,000 school children from Malaria

by NETwork Against Malaria
Vetted
NCYC
NCYC

Winter 2015

UPDATE

 

 

 

NCYC Success!

Seven teen volunteers represented NETwork Against Malaria at the National Catholic Youth Conference (NCYC) held in Indianapolis on November 19-22, 2015.  Over 24,000 high school students attended  NCYC.  They came from all over the United States including Alaska and Hawaii. Our NETwork Against Malaria teens shared with these peers the deadly impact of malaria by distributing 20,000 thousand of pieces of information about malaria to conference goers. They spoke to their peers about malaria and its deadly impact on the lives of students and children in Uganda. NETwork teen volunteers were touched to see the heartfelt reaction of the conference-goers when they learned that one child dies of malaria every five minutes in Uganda. Ugandan students often miss 60 days of school sick with malaria. In Uganda, a student is required to pass an end of the year competency exam in order to go onto the next grade. Malaria, if survived, keeps many students from passing onto the next grade. In the case of girls, impoverished parents often do not want to pay the school fees for girls to repeat the same grade. Girls are often forced to drop out of school and relegated to a life of poverty.

NETwork Against Malaria volunteers also sold jewelry and up-cycled items at their booth at NCYC to raise money to buy enough malaria nets to protect one school in Uganda. Before attending NCYC, teen volunteers worked for months to make beanies, mittens and leg warmers from recycled donated sweaters. They tye-dyed 300 t-shirts and hand painted NETwork Against Malaria’s logo on each t-shirt and 250 sweat shirts. Other items like bracelets, necklaces, earrings, bookmarks, rings, wire crosses and rosaries were some of the thousands items made by NETwork Against Malaria chapters across the United States. All these items were sold to purchase malaria nets for the students in Uganda.

 

NCYC was a great success. For three days these seven students shared the message of how malaria kills millions, prevents students from going to school to learn and how one single malaria net costing $5.00 can (given to a student who shares the net with two siblings), can protect the lives of three children for 10 years. Our NETwork teen volunteers inspired thousands of their peers to get involved and reach out to students in Uganda. These teen volunteers raised over $9,000 and inspired the beginning of several new chapters. Such giving of themselves and devotion to a cause is an exemplary example for all.

 

Thank you again for your generosity. We could not have done it without you.

Volunteer spotlight:

Meet Victor

 

Victor is an exchange student from Nigeria. He worked tirelessly on Monday evenings for four months to create fine up-cycled items sold at NCYC. Victor learned to cut with a scissors and to run an electric sewing machine. He has had malaria 3 times himself. While Victor was working to save the lives of Ugandan students from malaria his college-age sister became ill with malaria when she accidently left her malaria net at home. She spent two weeks in the hospital and is now doing well. Victor says he sleeps under a malaria net every night when at home. Victor said of his volunteering with NETwork Against Malaria, "If I can help save one child from getting malaria, I will be happy."

 

 

Update from Uganda

After our most recent net distribution in Uganda, NETwork Against Malaria was featured by the national newspaper, New Vision,

http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/674633-kiryandongo-school-%20where-pupils-are-taught-in-five-languages.html

as well as the national news station, NBS.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBfpX8M6ao0

 

Feel free to watch and see the view of NETwork from the Ugandan perspective.

 

 

 

Electrokaplosion-fighting malaria with music

Benjamin Bousquet is the musician behind Electrokaplosion. He writes and produces all of his own music. He describes himself as, “Just a lonely Spaceman making music on the moon.”

 

Ben also has decided that 100% of all proceeds made by his new album "Expanding Horizons" will be donated to NETwork Against Malaria. Be sure to check it out now on Bandcamp!

http://electrokaplosion.bandcamp.com/album/expanding-horizons

 

 

 

Chapter update

Several dedicated students across the country are in the process of expanding the efforts of NETwork to new universities including:

  1. Alice Steffl, Allison Renken at University of North Dakota
  2. Jimmy Qian at Penn
  3. Kalian Shi, Caroline Zhu, Caroline Lee, Charis Wang, Kiujoy Kokko, Alvin Sheng at Rice
  4. Sanika Sherry, Divya Navi, Anna Hoiberg, Annie Johnson, Simran Aulakh, Tom Berta, Laurel Smeins, Ryan Smith at Iowa State
  5. Valenza Stearns at Seton Hall
Victor
Victor

Links:

Thank you for investing in NETwork Against Malaria. Our efforts to protect students against malaria and awareness in Katulikire are spreading throughout Uganda.  Recently, NETwork has been featured on national tv and in the national newspaper in Uganda.  These articles discussed our distribution at Conram Primary School, a distribution you made possible.  The articles detail how students at Conram use 5 languages to communicate. Many students in the area miss school due to malaria sickness but most parents cannot afford the treatment.  At most health centers malaria is the leading diagnosis, especially for students between 0 and 12 years old.  It is also true that few students can afford to prevent the disease by purchasing malaria nets.  This is where NETwork comes in!!  Despite the high incidence of malaria in the Katulikire region, few NGOs focus on school children in the area.

Francis Banura, our volunteer, confirmed that surveys have indicated that absenteeism has drastically reduced in areas where NETwork has distributed nets. 

Please take the time to watch the video and read the newspaper article! You can see hear about malaria from the eye of our recipients and volunteers!

Links:

Trudy
Trudy

"I received a net from NETwork Against Malaria when I was in primary school. I have been able to stay healthy and stay in school!" -Trudy

 

Trudy is a senior four student at Stella Maututina secondary school. She received a net as a student at Opok in 2012.  She stayed healthy, and she stayed in school. As a student at Stella she is performing well. I met Trudy when she stayed at school over the summer break to study. Her family hopes that she will do well in school.  As a leader in the community, she can help the entire family. Thank you for your investment and her. It pays to invest in the health and education of young girls like Trudy. They struggle so much to stay in school. When they succeed it benefits themselves, their families, and ultimately the entire village. 

Recipient
Recipient
 
A DISTRIBUTION UPDATE
 
I was in Uganda in 2011 when South Sudan gained its independence.  For weeks preceding their independence day, the Sudanese could be seen packing their belongings, saying their goodbyes, and telling their friends that something good had come out of their suffering—the independent South Sudan they had always dreamed of having. They headed home to be present at the ceremony and build a new South Sudan.  Those who stayed behind celebrated the day of their independence with celebrations that could be heard around Kampala city. 
 
Two years later, the hope was quashed when a civil war broke out between the president and vice president of Sudan.  People were divided along ethnic lines, and the suffering they had endured to bring about an independent South Sudan was repeated.  Rival troops passed through the villages.  Men and boys did not escape, women and girls bore other scars of war.  By the time, I returned to Uganda in 2014 many South Sudanese had come back and hundreds were arriving each day.  This time as women headed and children headed households.  
Despite everything they have been through, they still have hope.  One of the refugee women, Gloria, brought me baskets and cake.  Please, help her sell these things so that she can pay for her daughter to go to high school.  They hope that South Sudan will stabilize and their children will be the future leaders in the country.  As such, the public schools in Uganda swell with South Sudanese refugees.  Still, there are many barriers for them to attend school—they plant crops on small plots allocated by UNHCR.  They walk for hours to obtain water for their households.  They struggle with hunger.  They are very vulnerable to sickness, especially malaria.  For children who have already overcome so much, seen so much, and will continue to struggle, our goal is to help them stay in school by protecting them against malaria.  Everyone in Katulikire area suffers from malaria almost annually.  Due to malnutrition, stress, conditions in the refugee camp, the refugees are particularly vulnerable to malaria.  By protecting these children against malaria and helping their families, we protect the workforce, financial resources, and help our students so that they may live to see stability in South Sudan and return educated to become future leaders. 
Our goal was to distribute nets on October 15 to the students in the refugee camp, but on September 15, we did not have adequate funding.  We issued a plea for help to protect the first 2,000 refugee students.  We received an outpouring of support from across the country, particularly from Charlie Johnson and the followers of his blog.  Because of this support, we not only covered the first 2,000 students, we were able to expand our efforts to a second refugee school and distribute nets to 3,965 refugee students at Canrom and Bidong Public schools. 
 
Thank you again for your generosity.  We could not have done it without you. 

Links:

A recipient at Bakhita Primary School May 2015
A recipient at Bakhita Primary School May 2015

The people of Uganda are known for their generosity.  When I was in Uganda, despite their poverty, the villagers were most generous to me.  I was given plots of land, looms of Ugandan fabric, a hand-made dress, skirt, gifts for my family.  I was always a celebrated guest often going to a village home where I would be fed until I was so full I was gagging.  Villagers walked for hours to bring me gifts. These gifts were given from what they did not have.   

Similarly, the Ugandans have been most generous to refugees. It’s now a famous picture.  A three-year-old Syrian child, Aylan Kurdi, appears to be sleeping on a beach.  Instead, he has perished in a perilous journey from Syria to Europe.  The picture has caused outrage and provoked an international response.  Long before innocent Aylan washed ashore on a Turkish beach, the Katulikire area welcomed over 12,000 South Sudanese refugees to their community and schools over the past 2 years.  UNICEF estimates 60 to 100 new refugees are arriving in Katulikire every day.  The goings on in South Sudan are similar to those in Syria.  War, rape, slavery, child soliders.  What if Uganda, a country struggling with great poverty of its own, had decided it did not have the resources to allow the most poor and vulnerable, built fences, and closed its borders?  Instead, they were welcomed into Katulikire where they attend the free, public schools.  Attendance is swelling.  Malaria season is coming.  We are trying to help these poor, vulnerable refugees prepare for malaria by continuing our distributions to the approximately 2,000 refugee and Ugandan students at Chanrom/Bidong Primary School, but we do not have enough money. To make this distribution possible, we would require an additional $5,000 USD.  We would appreciate any help. 

The refugees face numerous, seemingly insurmountable problems.  It’s difficult to know where to start. I believe the lowest cost, most effective intervention is working with malaria prevention.  Malaria kills, stifles education, cripples the workforce, and drains financial resources. I could not be more grateful for your generosity to my friends in Uganda.   I know that you have many needs, see many needs and your sacrifice may not be so different from that of my friends in Katulikire who did my hair, hung beads around my neck, prepared a rabbit, scaled trees to pick fruits and watched proudly, joyously, but hungrily as I ate because there was not enough to go around. 

If you are able to help us protect the children of Chanrom/Bidong Primary School, $5 purchases a net for a student.  We have funding for about the first 1000 students. We could not be more grateful for any help supporting the next 1000 students.

Links:

 

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Organization Information

NETwork Against Malaria

Location: Belleville, IL - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.networkagainstmalaria.org
Project Leader:
Margaret McGlynn
Belleville, IL United States
$10,874 raised of $30,000 goal
 
123 donations
$19,126 to go
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