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UN aims to plant a billion trees in 2007

plantforplant.gif UNEP announced their Plant for the Planet: Billion Tree Campaign today, an effort to help dampen global warning. "Under the Plant for the Planet: Billion Tree Campaign, individuals, children, youth and community groups, schools, non-governmental organizations, business and industry, farmers, local authorities, and national governments are urged to plant trees as a small but practical step to combat what UNEP says is probably the key challenge of the 21st century. So far over 157 million tree planting pledges have been received." More The campaign was inspired by 2004 Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathai of the Green Belt Movement in Kenya. Get involved: Tree-planting pledges can be entered on the campaign website.
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Netraisers speak out: Malaria Boot Camp

benita.jpg As part of the Nothing But Nets campaign, some "netraisers" are sharing their stories of getting informed and being involved. Here's Benita's story: "The Malaria Boot Camp was a God-send for me. I have family in Senegal and have witnessed deaths due to malaria first hand. In the summer 2005, a friend took her newborn daughter to Senegal to show her off to the family. When she returned to the US, she felt weak and thought that she had a flu or something. After a few days, she went to our local hospital emergency room. They took blood and could not find anything, so they sent her home. She returned a second time, and was sent home again. After her third visit, the hospital had realized that she had deteriorated significantly, so they sent her blood work to a NYC hospital which helped them diagnose her malaria." More To find out how you can get involved, click here.
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Nothing But Nets launches in New York

Would you spend ten dollars to save a child's life? If it seems too simple, that's because it is. And that's what makes the Nothing But Nets campaign so incredible. Nothing But Nets is a global grassroots campaign to save lives by preventing malaria--the leading killer of children in Africa. For just ten dollars, you can provide a child with a life-saving anti-malaria bed net. It's really that easy. Inspired by sports columnist Rick Reilly, who asked each of his readers to donate at least $10 for a bed net, the campaign is now thousands strong, with partners such as the UN Foundation, NBA Cares, Sports Illustrated, VH1, The People of the United Methodist Church, the Mark J. Gordon Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. (In fact, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation have recently awarded a challenge grant to Nothing But Nets, meaning they'll match donations dollar for dollar up to $3 million!) I had the pleasure of going to a Nothing But Nets event yesterday at the NBA store in New York City, and the excitement around the campaign was amazing. In addition to featuring Rick Reilly and representatives from the campaign partners, perhaps the most convincing attendees were six-year old Katherine Commale and her mother, Lynda. After viewing a PBS program on Malaria and learning how the disease kills a child in Africa every 30 seconds, Katherine and Lynda decided to take action. To date, they have raised over $10,000 for the campaign. If a six-year old can do it, so can we. So please, spread the word about Nothing But Nets and start saving lives one net at a time. To learn more about Malaria, click here. To join the campaign, or to help out, click here.
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Nothing But Nets in New York

The Nothing But Nets campaign travels to New York City this week for a series of promotional events intended to raise awareness for the grassroots anti-malaria campaign. The events kick off today with a panel discussion at Hunter College with malaria advocacy experts from the United Nations, the NGO community and philanthropic organizations. Tomorrow, Rick Reilly, the Sports Illustrated writer whose column inspired the Nothing But Nets campaign, will speak at the NBA store in Manhattan along with representatives from the UN Foundation and the NBA. Finally, on Friday, the New Jersey Nets-Chicago Bulls basketball game at Continental Airlines Arena will highlight Nothing But Nets, the first of many in-house promotions at NBA arenas throughout the country. For those in New York interested in attending any or all of these events, more details are below the fold.
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Alice Nah: “Towards a World Without Strangers”

"Today, Dec 18, marks International Migrants Day, a day to celebrate the contribution of migrants to our societies, and to promote their rights and fundamental freedoms across the world. In 2006, there has been increasing attention on the phenomena of international migration. In September this year, the UN facilitated high-level dialogues amongst its member states to discuss the multi-dimensional aspects of international migration. Their focus was on how benefits could be maximised and negative impacts minimised as people continue to cross international borders." More
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Nothing But Nets Hits the White House

The grassroots anti-malaria campaign to raise money for insecticide treated bed nets traveled to the White House yesterday. The NBA and United Methodist Church represented the Nothing But Nets Campaign at a White House Summit on malaria, the number one killer of children in Africa. So far, the campaign has raised over $1.6 million to send life-saving bed nets to Africa. Learn more about the summit and Nothing But Nets.
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Nobel Prize Celebration – Muhammad Yunus

With this year's Nobel Peace Prize bestowed on micro-lending pioneer Muhammad Yunus, the Nobel Committee affirmed the principle that we cannot have peace while billions live in abject poverty. Since 1976, his Grameen Bank has been fighting poverty in the developing world, one small loan at a time. To celebrate Dr. Yunus' honor, join the Grameen Foundation for a week of activities to help raise awareness of the power of micro lending. And once again, congratulations to Dr. Yunus.