This morning I got a yellow fever vaccination and took two passport photos. I sent proof of the vaccination, the photos, my passport, and $130 to the embassy of Mali to get a travel visa to that country. I'll be spending two weeks of my vacation time next year to fly to Mali (all expenses for travel paid by me) to help with a research project that could potentially eradicating malaria (or more accurately, scientifically demonstrate how to eradicate malaria). We need to raise $140k for the project, and so far have raised about $110,000. So far, the largest single contributor is a little church you may have heard of headquartered at 50 E. North Temple. We still need $30k, and I'm hoping the non-Mormon community will pony up.
Here is the story.
My dad is the token non-Mormon on the board of directors of a small charity in Salt Lake City called the Ouelessebougou Alliance (OA) (and yes, that is the worst name of all time for a charity). The the OA works on providing some basic charity services to a small set of villages around the little town of Ouelessebougou in Mali. They help with water sanitation, schools, education on basic sanitation, mosquito nets, that kind of thing. They are very big on trying to help empower the villagers to help themselves. The OA's budget is small and their goals have always been humble. Until now.
Last year, my dad was on his way to Mali to visit the operation there, and in the airport happened to meet Dr. Gunter Muller, MD, Ph.D. (https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Gunter_Muller), who I'm told is the world's foremost expert on malaria. Upon meeting my dad and hearing about the OA and their relationship with these villages, Dr. Muller recruited my dad for this project to eradicate malaria in Africa.
Dr. Muller believes that international charities and government agencies are already spending more than enough money in the fight against malaria to eradicate it. Yet malaria continues to infect over 200 million people a year, with over 400,000 cases ending in death. Why the discrepancy? Because the money is being spent on searching for a malaria vaccine rather than mosquito abatement. If a fraction of the money already being spent on vaccine research was instead spent on mosquito abatement programs in Africa, malaria could be ended once and for all.
However, large government and charitable organizations are entrenched in looking for a vaccine. At the moment they aren’t interested in Dr. Muller’s mosquito abatement approach. This would change if Dr. Muller could prove that cost-effective mosquito abatement protocols could be successfully implemented in Africa.
Dr. Muller, and the OA (read my dad) have recruited partners from multiple universities and U.S. mosquito abatement districts to conduct controlled scientific experiments on protocols to prove the effectiveness of mosquito abatement in Africa. The experiment will be conducted from January 2021 to May 2021 and when finished, Dr. Muller will publicize the results in the top journals and conferences in the world. If successful, Dr. Muller will have the research needed to recruit international charities and government organizations to expand the proven mosquito abatement program throughout Mali and the rest of Africa.
Dr. Muller and his team of experts are donating 100% of their time on the research. Only $140,000 is needed which will be used for equipment, chemicals, shipping, taxes, and duties. So far, the OA has been able to raise $110,000. I'm told that the LDS Church is the largest contributor to that (perhaps something on the order of $30k?).
I invite you all to laude the Church for making a contribution that is huge compared to the total amount we need, or censure it for making something so microscopic compared to what they could donate. Either way is fine with me. But what I ask is that you go to the GoFundMe site and donate something towards the remaining $30k to prove that you aren't a total hypocrite. Or post up a storm on this thread and help get it publicized and get others to donate. Do whatever you can.
(Note we are doing this through the GoFundMe site rather than donating the money directly to OA in order to be sure the money is earmarked for the malaria project. 100% of the donations will go to this project and it is tax deductible).
The potential that this has to get the large charities to more efficiently direct their donations (I’m talking about you, Mr. Gates) and actually eradicate malaria is staggering. I hope you'll want to be a part of this in a small way.
Here is the link to the GoFundMe site my brother set up. Our official goal on that site is to raise $5,000 of the $30,000 we need from our friends and family. Thank you for reading my shameless appeal for donations.
https://www.gofundme.com/f/t6hqja-end-m ... hare-sheet
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It’s relatively easy to agree that only Homo sapiens can speak about things that don’t really exist, and believe six impossible things before breakfast. You could never convince a monkey to give you a banana by promising him limitless bananas after death in monkey heaven.
-Yuval Noah Harari
-Yuval Noah Harari