World Malaria Day is April 25, 2013. I am organizing my football (soccer) team, the Eagles, to be educated on malaria and then host a football match for malaria awareness. My nurse Paulina Derry will be leading the education for the team as well as the community. Materials for the event were provided through Standing with Africa to Terminate malaria (SWATm) to which I am the treasurer. We hope that through the education we will see behavior changes such as increase in long lasting insecticide treated nets (LLIN) use, increase in early and complete malaria treatment and increase in pregnant women taking all three doses of prophylaxis offered for free at the clinic.
Here is a letter to the Philadelphia Eagles from my friend, Ibrahim Yussif. Please show support for him in telling Americans about malaria in Africa. I only changed a little bit of the grammar and chose to remove the name of his village.
My name is Ibrahim Yussif. I come from _______ Junior High School. I am in form two. I am one of the Eagles members as a player. The position I play is defense.
Hello my good friend, how are you? I hope you are fine as I am. I want to tell you about malaria and how it affects us and the symptoms. I know by the end of reading this page you will know well about malaria.
First in Ghana we have a lot of malaria. Most of the people get it through mosquito’s bites and these mosquitos come from clean water. There are many mosquitos that bite and don’t give you malaria. The mosquitos called anopheles, which primarily bite at night, do give you malaria. It kills very fast. In my family this malaria killed my brother’s baby girl. In Ghana every year it kills more than a hundred people [actually 14,000 children under 5 years old die every year in Ghana]. It is a bad disease, which affects our people.
Secondly I will like to tell you the symptoms of malaria. If a person gets malaria these are the symptoms: [cyclical] fever, chills, headache and vomiting. This is how you prevent yourself from malaria. You have to sleep under mosquito net, weed around your house and clear excess bathroom water by digging a hole for the water to go in [and cover it] so that mosquitos cannot produce new ones. Sometimes we burn dry neem leaves to produce a smoke that deters mosquitos. My friend, this is my idea I have for you. I hope you will be able to read this in person.
|Ghana Eagles in the Upper West Region, Ibrahim Yussif is featured on the far left of this photo|
To learn more about World Malaria Day activities happening across Africa in Peace Corps check out Stompoutmalaria.org