Leaders from governments, civil society, the private sector and multilateral organisationswill today gather at the Commonwealth Malaria Commitment event at the Science Museum in London to mark the first anniversary of the 2018 landmark CHOGM commitment to halve malaria across the Commonwealth by 2023.
Taking place on the eve of World Malaria Day and during a week of official celebrations for the 70th anniversary of the Commonwealth, the event will showcase the Commonwealth at its best; tackling one of the biggest global health threats of our time, which disproportionately impacts the Commonwealth.
Convened by Malaria No More UK, the RBM Partnership to End Malaria and the UK Government, as current Commonwealth Chair in Office, the event will celebrate progress and report on the ambitious targets made in April 2018, restating the commitment to maintain momentum as we move a year closer to 2023.
The 2018 London Malaria Summitset out to galvanise renewed action on the disease after evidence showed that progress had stalled for the first time in over 15 years, and there was a risk of resurgence, compounded by a plateauing in global funding. At the Summit,global institutions came together to make financial, political and scientific commitments totalling $4.1 billion (£2.9 billion). Following this, 53 Commonwealth nations heard the cry to action and made a commitment to halve malaria in the Commonwealth by 2023. If these commitments are met, they will prevent 350 million case of malaria and save 650,000 lives in Commonwealth countries.
Malaria No More UK and partners around the world are committed to tracking progress against the Commonwealth malaria commitment made at CHOGM 2018 and are working with national governments to accelerate progress on malaria.Malaria No More UK’s 2019 Commonwealth Malaria Report, published today, shows clear evidence of progress on malaria but also many challenges ahead.
To further support the Commonwealth to track progress in tackling malaria, Malaria No More UK is developing a dynamic digital tool. Available in May, in advance of the Commonwealth Health Ministers Meeting, the tool has been produced by global digital agency Isobar as part of Malaria No More UK’s three-year partnership with Dentsu Aegis Network. Built using,World Health Organisation (WHO) data, the tracker will provide a snapshot of the malaria fight across the Commonwealth, as well as showcase progress made in each specific malaria endemic country. It will allow users to discover more information about the measures countries have taken that have resulted in successful results to fight the disease to help share best practise across the Commonwealth.
Collectively, Commonwealth countries have seen a small reduction in the number of malaria cases and a 7% reduction in the number of deaths from malaria. Seven Commonwealth countries: the Gambia, Belize, Bangladesh, India, Malaysia, Mozambique and Nigeria are already on a trajectory to achieve the target to halve malaria by 2023. The report highlights just a few of the many initiatives taking place across the Commonwealth to further this progress. However, 19 Commonwealth countries recorded an increase in malaria incidence and in 15 Commonwealth countries the number of deaths from malaria increased.
James Whiting, Chief Executive Officer, Malaria No More UK said: “It is fantastic to see the progress that has been made in the Commonwealth to work towards this crucial target of halving malaria in the Commonwealth by 2023. I’m delighted that on the eve of World Malaria Day, governments and institutions from around the world can gather together and rememberthe historic commitment that was made in April 2018. We should celebrate success, but we must not be complacent.2019 is a critical year for malaria. If we are going to win the fight against this devastating disease and save millions of lives, we need to continue to inspire support and build a strong mandate for bold action to end malaria for good.”
It will take sustained effort from all elements of the malaria community and beyond – including donors, national governments, private sector, NGOs, research and technical bodies, grassroots organisations and individuals to meet the commitment to halve malaria. The Malaria No More UK Commonwealth Malaria Honours, launched at the Science Museum event, are intended to recognise and highlight examples of innovation, commitment and best practice across the malaria community to accelerate progress and maintain momentum as we move towards the target date of 2023.
The Science Museum event today is part of global celebrations for World Malaria Dayon the 25th April, which will seeThe RBM Partnership to End Malaria mobilising leaders and citizens to work together towards a malaria-free world. Culminating at an event in Paris, this year’s World Malaria Day seeks to encourage as many people as possible across the globe to make a personal commitment to ending malaria.
The recent ‘Power of the Voice’ campaign, launched by David Beckham, ahead of World Malaria Day, is designed to amplify the voices of those affected by malaria and has given publics around the world an opportunity to speak out and demand that ‘Malaria Must Die’ via the world’s first voice petition. The petition was launched through a short film, produced by Ridley Scott Associates, where David appears to speak nine languages as he invites people to add their voices to help end one of the world’s oldest and deadliest diseases. The voices collected via the petition will be delivered to world leaders ahead of critical funding decisions for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria.
The Commonwealth Malaria Commitment event is supported by Fever-Tree, the pioneering global premium mixer brand, who is helping to accelerate the fight to end malaria with the return of its award-winning social media and digital campaign, ‘Raise Your Glass, Erase Malaria’.From 22April to 31 May, Fever-Tree is calling on people across the world to join them in raising a glass to malaria’s demise and share the moment on social media. For every glass raised on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, tagging @FeverTreeMixers and #MalariaMustDie, Fever-Tree will donate £5 to Malaria No More UK’s work to save lives.