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World Malaria Day 2015: When YEDI & Special Olympics Nigeria Kicked Against Malaria

With the sponsorship of ExxonMobil and support of Coca-Cola, and in line with global efforts to rein in and eradicate the malaria scourge, YEDI partnered with Special Olympics Nigeria to reach over 2500 people at Akoka Community in Lagos with the 'Kick Against Malaria Football Tournament' (Season 3) on May 1, 2015. The community tourney which was held at St. Finbarr’s College had other features including free malaria testing and treatment, talk on malaria, family health forum, drama presentation, etc. Six teams (comprising the Special Olympics team and children from schools within the community) participated in the 8-a-side football competition. With 25 medical personnel on ground, 544 people accessed the mini-clinic with services that include malaria testing and treatment, HIV/AIDS Counselling and Testing and general medical check up.

Some descriptionSome description              Fig.1: Akwa-Ibom Tournament

On April 25, 2015, YEDI in partnership with Aids Care Managers had organized a similar tournament in Akwa-Ibom in commemoration of World Malaria Day. The Akwa-Ibom event which was also sponsored by ExxonMobil had 226 community members in attendance and was held at QIC Primary School, Usung Iyang, Eket. 162 and 100 young people accessed the mini clinic for malaria and HIV testing respectively. Five people tested positive to malaria parasite and were given malaria drugs while others were given routine drugs. One person tested positive to HIV and was referred to Immanuel General Hospital to receive further services.

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              Fig.2: Lagos Tournament

The malaria event in both states had other engaging and entertaining activities aside from the football tournament including bed net distribution, drama presentation, bed net demonstration, cultural dance, music and light refreshment.

Global efforts by corporations, individuals and organizations to push back the malaria scourge are yielding results: Malaria mortality rate in the WHO African region has fallen by 54% and by 47% globally since 2000 when ExxonMobil began making a huge investment to combat malaria. With a whopping $120 million, ExxonMobil has sponsored the distribution of 13,186,369 bed nets, 1,922,031 doses of anti-malarial drugs and 1,054,165 rapid diagnostic kits, reaching more than 105 million people in Africa and Asia. This intervention has also seen the training of 355,484 healthcare workers and counsellors, who are available in providing early diagnosis and treatment to reduce the disease, prevent deaths and reduce transmission.

Since 2013, ExxonMobil has generously sponsored YEDI with the Kick Against Malaria Football Tournament to provide malaria testing and treatment, free health services, insecticide-treated net distribution, and much more to communities in Nigeria.

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            Fig.3: Registration point (Lagos Tournament)

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