Concordia University, Nebraska Students Fight the Night to Help Stop Malaria

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Project kicks off Lutheran Malaria Initiative campaign on campus.

It is not very often that we have the chance to directly affect the life of someone who lives on the other side of the world, and all we have to do is sleep outside.

On Sept. 28 many Concordia University, Nebraska students will give up the comfort of their beds and sleep outside to provide a bed net to someone at risk of contracting malaria in another part of the world. The night under the stars will be the capstone of a “Fight the Night” event, a project that kicks off a Lutheran Malaria Initiative campaign on Concordia’s campus.

Earlier that evening, all are invited to enjoy food, music and entertainment in the quad at the center of campus. Admission to the event is $10, the cost to provide a bed net for one child in need.

Malaria is a mosquito-borne disease caused by a parasite. Bed nets are the fastest way to prevent malaria infection because they create a protective barrier against mosquitoes at night, when the vast majority of transmissions occur.

“It is not very often that we have the chance to directly affect the life of someone who lives on the other side of the world, and all we have to do is sleep outside and if you ask me, that’s the best part!” said Alyssa McAfee, a junior from Grand Island, Neb.

Planned activities include live music performed by campus bands, an IMPROVables comedy show and the much-anticipated “Pie your Professor” game. St. John Lutheran Church will provide fruit and baked goods while Our Redeemer Lutheran Church will provide hot chocolate during the event. Those wishing to participate should bring tents and sleeping bags; bed nets will be provided for those who wish to sleep under one for the night.

The event is part of an effort to raise $25,000 through student and donor support at Concordia. Donations will go directly to the LMI, which works in Sub-Saharan Africa to end malaria. So far the campus has raised more than $11,000 for the cause.

People with malaria often experience fever, chills and flu-like illness. Left untreated, they may develop severe complications and die. In 2010, an estimated 216 million cases of malaria occurred worldwide and 655,000 people died. More than ninety percent of those deaths occurred in Africa, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

To make a donation to the Lutheran Malaria Initiative and Concordia’s fundraising goal, visit lutheranmalaria.org and click the LMI Universities tab near the top of the page; then click on Concordia University, Nebraska.

Concordia University, Nebraska, founded in 1894, is a fully accredited, coeducational university located in Seward, Neb. that currently serves over 2,200 students. Concordia offers more than 50 professional and liberal arts programs in an excellent academic and Christ-centered community that equips men and women for lives of learning, service and leadership in the church and world. For more information, visit cune.edu.

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Andrew Swenson
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