Words by Tess Becker
Coming out of the Covid-19 pandemic, most people probably have a newfound understanding of disease and the impact that it can have on communities and entire countries, especially in wealthier nations with more accessible forms of medicine and treatment.
While Covid may not be as active a threat as it once was, other diseases still ravage communities, especially in developing countries. One disease in particular, malaria, has recently been officially wiped out of Belize.
The disease, which is spread by mosquitos, can be lethal and claims the lives of nearly 630,000 people a year. The WHO recently certified that Belize had eradicated the disease.
The WHO said the Central American nation had “achieved a dramatic reduction” in malaria cases, down from 10,000 in 1994 to zero indigenous cases in 2019.
“WHO congratulates the people and government of Belize and their network of global and local partners for this achievement”, said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General. “Belize is another example of how, with the right tools and the right approach, we can dream of a malaria-free future.”
At Smiley Movement, we like to elevate the work of charities across the world. Here are three charities whose causes align with the themes in this article.
The Life You Can Save. They work to help end malaria around the world. Consider donating.
The Trevor Project. They focus on suicide prevention and mental health support for queer youth. Support them here.
Kids In Distress. This organization helps support at risk kids and families around the US. Find out more.