Against Malaria Foundation

An SOVA volunteer working with AMF gives a tutorial on how to effectively hang a mosquito net in Orissa, India (AMF / againstmalaria.org)

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Against Malaria Foundation was founded in 2005. It works to distribute long-lasting insecticide-treated mosquito nets in Africa to protect against malarial infections.

Against Malaria Foundation

The Against Malaria Foundation fights malaria by distributing Insecticide-Treated mosquito nets.

  • Malaria killed 367-755 thousand people in 2013, most of them children, and there are about 200 million cases every year
  • Insecticide-Treated Bednets are one of the most effective ways to prevent transmission of malaria and have averted about 450 million cases since 2000
  • The Against Malaria Foundation can distribute bednets for between $5-7.50

How it works

  • AMF receives and reviews requests for mosquito nets from local ministries of health.
  • It carries out pre-distribution surveys to establish the number of nets needed.
  • It works with local health leaders to educate populations on all elements of malaria prevention, including the correct use of malaria nets.
  • It purchases the nets and delivers them (through its distribution partners). It also provides independent supervisors to ensure that the nets are not misappropriated, and go to the people who need them.
  • It continues to monitor local malaria rates, and carries out post-distribution surveys to monitor the use and condition of the nets.
  • Depending on the outcomes of these surveys, it provides further malaria education and additional nets as needed.
  • It publishes its pre- and post-distribution reports on its website (AMF links every donation you make to a particular distribution, which you can check on this page.

Why we recommend it

Malaria is a life-threatening disease transmitted by mosquitos. At first the symptoms are flu-like, but if untreated it can lead to respiratory distress and severe anaemia. According to the World Health Organisation, malaria kills around 584 000 deaths (range: 367 000–755 000) people a year, primarily African children who have been unable to develop immunity. It is one of Africa’s biggest killers.

AMF’s program has a strong track record of preventing malarial infections. It is also highly cost-effective, as its lean organisational structure, careful use of technology and partnerships with local charities keep its costs exceptionally low.

Its administrative costs are paid by established private donors, and the costs of distribution are covered by its distribution partners. This means that donations from the public go straight towards purchasing more nets. What’s more, its website lists all donations received and links each donation to a specific distribution, so donors can follow its progress and see the impact that they are having.

Its emphasis on preparation, distribution and follow-up ensures that it realises its potential in combating malaria and its effects. Delivering a net costs only $5 -$7.5 donated depending on location (including the costs of its distribution partners), and for each $3,340 donated, a death from malaria is prevented. For comparison, the UK’s National Health Service will spend up to £20,000 (over $30,000) for a single year of healthy life saved!

AMF is also extremely transparent about its operations. By posting its pre- and post-distribution reports online, it allows the public to see how effective it is in each instance.

Don't People Misuse Bednets?

In short, no. The most comprehensive survey show that less than 1% of the nets distributed are misused. We've written about this issue in detail in our 2015 update on AMF.

Case study: Distribution in Ntcheu, Malawi

A village in Ntcheu district, Malawi, where AMF works
  • AMF received a request from the Ministry of Health to provide mosquito nets to Ntcheu District in Malawi.
  • A pre-distribution survey was carried out, with 101,002 households visited to establish the number of nets needed. This was carried out by the 450 government Health Surveillance Assistants (HSAs) under the supervision of AMF’s local distribution partner, Concern Universal, and cost only $40,000.
  • The distribution took place between December 2011 and February 2012, achieving universal coverage for a population of 550,000. This was supervised by a team of 20 people from Concern Universal and the district’s health infrastructure.
  • Continued monitoring data showed a dramatic fall in the number of cases of malaria between 35 and 55%, compared to the same month in the prior year. This is in line with the scientific consensus on the results of randomized controlled trials that show that nets dramatically reduce malaria incidence:

Malaria rate

  • The first post-distribution survey found that 99% of the nets were still in very good condition, and that 90% of the nets were hung and in use. Additional education was provided to the areas with the lowest usage rates.

Read more about AMF’s progress in Ntcheu. The transparancy and monitoring for this particular distribution is standard, and you can find the data for all distributions on AMF's website.

Further information and donations

Donate to the Against Malaria Foundation