Next month is the start of the rainy season in Zambia and with it brings a higher risk of contracting malaria, the biggest killer of man. Though malaria is prevalent all year round, the next few months are the worst. It is essential that children have maximum protection against malaria. Every 60 seconds a child dies from malaria, 75% are under five in sub-Sahara Africa, including Zambia.
Last season the Mukuni Chiefdom alone reported 488 cases of malaria. The Butterfly Tree is currently raising funds to buy Vectorcide’s safe innovative products. Vectorcide caoting is far superior to the current method of indoor residual spraying, which is harmful, less effective and lasts only for six months.
Working alongside the Ministry of Health, who fully support this new intervention, we aim to reduce the number of new cases of malaria. This initiative will not replace insecticide treated mosquito nets, instead it will add further protection to those most at risk, especially infants and pregnant women. Our first distribution is currently taking place in Mukuni villages thanks to a generous donation from Saga Charitable Trust.
November is also the time for planting. After several months without a drop of rain, the parched African terrain is desperate for water. Communities are hoping for ‘good rains’ – last year the rains were so poor, resulting in most maize crops in the Southern Province perishing.
Good nutrition is essential for early development in children, but when your family is poor there is never enough food to go round. For many families surviving on just one meal a day is the norm. Maize is the staple diet of Zambians, especially those living in rural areas, but it is totally rain dependent. Consequently we are looking at crops that need less water.
To date we have supported some twenty schools to initiate sustainable feeding programmes. Our evaluation has shown that pupils performance and attendance is much improved. When children have to walk several miles to get to school it is comforting to know that food will be available.
In the 21st century no child should go hungry, and yet according to the World Food Programme Organisation there are 795 million hungry people, of which 75% are in rural areas of Africa and Asia. Funds for malaria prevention and for feeding programmes are needed for this season. We are very grateful for any support you can offer, please use this link to make a donation.