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Media Contact: Emily Sollie, 410-230-2802 office, 443-220-3269 cell, esollie@lwr.org

Lutherans Across the Country Help Launch Lutheran Malaria Initiative

Baltimore—September 15, 2011
—The Lutheran Malaria Initiative (LMI) will launch publically Sept. 18-20 with several Lutheran congregations and schools hosting special offerings, awareness events and other activities.

LMI is an unprecedented campaign to mobilize U.S. Lutherans in the global effort to eliminate malaria deaths in Africa by 2015. LMI goals are to increase awareness of malaria and raise $45 million to help fight the disease. LMI is made possible through support from the United Nations Foundation.

Lutheran congregations, schools and individuals have already contributed nearly $2 million for LMI to help the people of Africa whose everyday lives are affected by malaria.

The following churches and schools will hold LMI events during the public launch:

  • Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Cameron, Mo.
  • St. John’s Lutheran Church, Wheaton, Ill.
  • Ascension Lutheran Church, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, York, Pa.
  • Faith Lutheran Church, Lacey, Wash.
  • Salem Lutheran Church, Tomball, Tx.

All told, some 650 congregations and 200 schools across the country expect to hold LMI events before the end of the year.

Churches, schools and individuals interested in showing their support of LMI during the public launch might choose to pray a special LMI prayer or read the children's book about malaria, “Little Things Make Big Differences,” by LWR president and CEO John Nunes and his wife Monique Nunes.

Churches, schools and individuals can also show their support by joining LMI to receive an “LMI Starter Kit” that gives a step-by-step guide on how to organize and complete a local campaign in congregations, schools, offices, neighborhoods and communities.

“I want to thank everyone who is participating in this LMI public launch and am likewise grateful for all those who plan to join in the future,” said LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison. “We have our Lutheran partners at the last mile who are able to help those affected by the ravages of malaria. This initiative will vastly increase the capacity of our partner churches to deliver care, education, and prevention of malaria where they live.”

“Between 40 percent and 60 percent of health care in the developing world countries is provided by faith-based organizations, like our Lutheran partners,” UN Foundation CEO Kathy Calvin added. “It is inspiring to see how the Lutheran community in the U.S. can help the UN reach families in rural villages on the other side of the world.”

“We are thrilled and excited about this Lutheran Malaria Initiative, this global partnership to end needless deaths due to a preventable disease,” said Rev. John Nunes, LWR president and CEO. “Malaria is a devastating disease, and through LMI, there is something that each and every one of us can do to make a difference.”

About the Lutheran Malaria Initiative
The Lutheran Malaria Initiative, a partnership of Lutheran World Relief (LWR) and The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) and made possible through support from the United Nations Foundation, aims to mobilize Lutherans in the United States to help end malaria deaths in Africa by 2015. Both LWR and the LCMS have a long history of working to alleviate suffering and reduce poverty in rural communities around the world. Through the Lutheran Malaria Initiative, the LCMS and LWR can leverage the reach and power of the Lutheran network to make a significant impact through education, prevention and treatment of this devastating disease. For more information, visit www.lutheranmalaria.org.

About Lutheran World Relief
Lutheran World Relief, an international nonprofit organization, works to end poverty and injustice by empowering some of the world's most impoverished communities to help themselves. With partners in 35 countries, LWR seeks to promote sustainable development with justice and dignity by helping communities bring about change for healthy, safe and secure lives; engage in Fair Trade; promote peace and reconciliation; and respond to emergencies. LWR is headquartered in Baltimore, Md. and has worked in international development and relief since 1945.

Lutheran World Relief is a ministry of U.S. Lutherans, serving communities living in poverty overseas.

 

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WHO IS LWR? Lutheran World Relief works to improve the lives of smallholder farmers and people experiencing poverty in Africa, Asia and Latin America, both in times of emergencies and for the long term. With the financial support of US Lutherans and other donors, LWR strengthens communities through programs in agriculture, climate, and emergency support. LWR works with partners, supporters and technical assistance providers to achieve lasting results. For more information, visit lwr.org.

Lutheran World Relief is a ministry of U.S. Lutherans, serving communities living in poverty overseas.

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