We received a letter this week from Mulberry United Methodist Church in Mulberry, Ind. When their Autumn World Vision magazine arrived, they were just starting their Vacation Bible School. The cover story, “Taking Cover,” about fighting malaria with insecticide-treated bed nets, inspired their missions project.
“We had a camping theme, so doing the mosquito nets for missions fit in perfectly,” wrote VBS director Ronnette Peden. Each time the kids donated money for a bed net for children in Africa, teachers hung up a picture of a crossed-out mosquito. “The excitement of seeing all those pictures and the excitement of teaching the kids about giving was exceptional,” Ronnette said.
Thanks, Ronnette, for the creative idea and for fighting malaria! This issue is striking a chord—we all know what it’s like to be bitten by a pesky mosquito. But here in the U.S., we’ve beaten malaria, so a bite won’t kill us. Today, prospects are better than ever for beating malaria in the developing world, with treated bed nets as a key tool. When 80 percent of a community’s residents sleep under these nets, malaria prevalence decreases by up to 50 percent.