Before launching into the post, a note on care packages. We LOVE ‘em. They bless us immensely and it is the cause of great giddiness in our house. However, we have had the mystery of missing packages. A few have gotten through but now we have missing packages (one from November). However, if we can produce a tracking number, the disappearing package manages to suddenly appear! It seems like it takes at least one month but have waited around three for others. If you send one, just hold on to that tracking number and if you haven’t heard from us in three months about it, maybe let us know one is supposed to be on the way and the tracking number. We have suggestions to if you want ideas, just shoot us an e-mail! :)
Onto the annoying topic of mosquitos. They have been on my mind since Zanzibar, especially because Little A seemed to be putting off a pheromone that made her so succulent, poor child was covered in mosquito bites. Malarial mosquitos don’t live at high altitudes so we don’t have them in Addis Ababa or Injibara.
When we travel to other places in Ethiopia, we start our malaria meds and often sleep under mosquito nets.
Here is an example of mosquito nets put up for the day in Langano. At night, they are let down and tucked under the mattress. Malaria mosquitos are not active during the day but starting at dusk.
It was so annoying, you know how the bites are. Here are The Littles, oblivious to the beauty behind them, just so glad to have somewhere to scratch their mosquito bites.
Here’s the reality, I have the luxury of being annoyed by mosquitos. For half of the world’s population, mosquitos are more than annoying, they are killers. Underneath our mosquito nets, on our malarial meds covered with repellant with access to medical care that can catch it early, it’s extreme unlikely we would die from malaria.
According to Mashable.com, written by Bill Gates, "The worst is malaria, which kills more than 600,000 people every year; another 200 million cases incapacitate people for days at a time. It threatens half of the world’s population and causes billions of dollars in lost productivity annually."
The following graphic is also from mashable.com and though I don’t agree with humans being lumped as an animal but overlooking that, it is worth viewing.
Through many organizations you can donate nets to parts of the world where malaria kills kids at a rate of one per minute. I have little personal experience with any of these agencies, so I hesitate to mention any but will mention one that stands out after minimal research. If interested in getting involved, please do your own research and don’t take my word for it! I am impressed by netsforlifeafrica.org as they not only distribute nets through the local church but they advertise a strong advocation for a “net culture” that comes with training with each net given. Because in many locales, the known reason for malaria isn’t directly thought of as tied to the mosquito and the tight woven mesh blocks air flow so a net donated without training may be used for a fishing net or a bridal veil, not out of ungratefulness but lack of knowledge about the transmission of the disease.
Is this something that stirs your heart and passion? We can’t get involved in every cause, but maybe this connects.