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    Make Malaria History

    ELCA Malaria Campaign hits $4 million mark

    Posted on July 26, 2012 by jessicanipp

    The ELCA Malaria Campaign was rolled out to the whole church during the ELCA Churchwide Assembly in August 2011.  At that time, we recognized the great work of 11 pioneering Pilot Synods, and invited the rest of the ELCA’s 65 synods to join us in our efforts to make malaria history.

    The ELCA Malaria Campaign is over 25% of the way to our goal of $15 million!

    I’m thrilled to report that the ELCA Malaria Campaign has gained momentum all over the church. From Hawaii to Maine, from Minnesota to Texas, individuals and congregations have given generously to the ELCA’s efforts to contain malaria in Africa. This week, we surpassed the $4 million mark!  That means we’re over 25% of the way to our goal. Many thanks to the generous ELCA members and congregations who’ve helped us to reach this great milestone!

    Another exciting milestone was reached this week as well: today we celebrate the first synod to reach the $200,000 mark in their fundraising efforts. Congratulations (and many thanks) to the Northeastern Ohio Synod! 

    I’d like to recognize a few other synods whose hard work has brought them very close to reaching the $200,000 mark:

    • Southwest California Synod: $195,337.69 raised so far
    • Minneapolis Area Synod: $192,942.60 raised so far
    • Northeastern Iowa Synod: $186,707.89 raised so far

    We invite you to support the efforts in your synod and in your congregation.  (If you’d like to know who your synod’s Malaria Coordinator is, contact my colleague Allison at She’ll be glad to steer you in the right direction.)

    Our overall campaign goal is to raise $15 million by 2015, which means an average of about $230,000 per synod.  We hope that some of the larger synods can raise even more than $230,000!

    A challenge: try to raise $10 per member of your congregation!

    Here’s another way to think about our $15 million goal:  it’s only about $4 per ELCA member.  If every single ELCA member donated their pocket change to the ELCA Malaria Campaign, we would meet our goal in no time! 

    So if you’re looking for a congregational goal, might I suggest $10 per baptized member? It’s a nice round number–think of it as providing one net or 5 doses of medication per member–and I think it’s an achievable goal as well.  (Of course, we also need congregations and individuals who are able to reach deeper into their hearts and pockets and give larger gifts.)

    I am so excited about the potential that we have, through the ELCA Malaria Campaign, to change the world.  Working together with our partner Lutheran churches in Africa, we can make malaria history!

    Youth Gathering Recap

    Posted on July 25, 2012 by jessicanipp

    Did you know that if every ELCA member gave just $4 to the ELCA Malaria Campaign, we would reach our goal? That’s one of the things that many ELCA youth learned last week.

    The ELCA Malaria Campaign Team (Jessica and Allison) had a fabulous week at the ELCA Youth Gathering!  We were graciously hosted by ELCA World Hunger within their 100 Wells space inside the Practice Peacemaking exhibit area in the Convention Center, and we welcomed thousands upon thousands of youth to our interactive area.

    Allison administers mosquito bites to participants traveling through the area of stagnant water during the “Walk for Water” simulation.

    Here’s how it worked: 100 Wells had a “Walk for Water” challenge, a simulation exercise that allowed youth to experience what it might be like to be a woman or a child living in a village with no running water. These women and children walk an average of 3.7 miles per day to retrieve water for their families to use for cooking, cleaning, bathing and drinking. The simulation included a few obstacles– a heat room to help participants experience what it might be like to carry water in typical tropical weather, a ramp to simulate uneven road, and–here’s where we come in–a pool of stagnant water that harbored lots of hungry mosquitoes!

    Participants encountering this area of stagnant water were inevitably bitten by a mosquito.  But did they contract malaria from that mosquito bite? They had to wait until the end of the track to find out!  

    Jessica talks with participants in the ELCA Malaria Campaign Clinic about how they can get their congregations involved in the ELCA Malaria Campaign.

    After they were finished carrying water, participants came to the ELCA Malaria Campaign Clinic, where the Malaria “SWAT Team” diagnosed their mosquito bites (with the help of a black-light flashlight) and had some conversation about what malaria is, what the ELCA Malaria Campaign is doing about it, and how they can be a part of the effort.

    We were overwhelmed by the positive response of youth and youth leaders. Many promised to go back to their congregations and educate them about the impact of malaria in the world, how we are working together with many Lutheran church bodies in Africa to address the problem, and how they can be a part of the ELCA’s efforts.  They got excited about the possibility of raising $4 (or more!) for each member of their congregation.

    Check out our new interactive experience!

    The ELCA Malaria Campaign had a second presence at the Youth Gathering as well– within the space called “The Wall and Making us Whole.”  There, we debuted an interactive software that we’re calling “The Malaria Story.”  The software is perfect for youth or adults, and does a great job of introducing the problem of malaria, the ELCA’s work and the possibilities for involvement. Try out the interactive experience here!

    An outpouring of support from ELCA members and congregations has already led to $4 million in gifts to the ELCA Malaria Campaign. That is a fantastic start, and it means we have $11 million left to raise.  Together, we can make it happen!


    See You in New Orleans!

    Posted on July 12, 2012 by jessicanipp

    Dear friends,

    The 2012 ELCA Youth Gathering takes place next week in New Orleans, LA.  Will you be one of the 36,000 youth and adult participants? 

    The ELCA Malaria Campaign will be there! Please plan to visit us in our spaces.

    We’ll have two different locations in Practice Peacemaking next week:

    – Within the 100 Wells space.  Mosquitoes breed in standing water, so watch out while you’re there– you might get infected with malaria! But don’t worry, you can visit our clinic for a cure (and to learn more about malaria and the ELCA Malaria Campaign).

    – We’ll also have a presence within the Walls/Making Us Whole space. There will be some interactive software that will help you learn about the problem of malaria in the world, the ways in which we are working together with our companions to contain malaria, and how you can help.

    Our ELCA Malaria Campaign staff members, Jessica and Allison, look forward to visiting with you next week! Have a great trip!