United Methodists across U.S. host HBO movie-watching parties to fight malaria

United Methodist Communications
Office of Public Information
810 12th Ave. S.
Nashville, TN 37203

April 17, 2013

Nashville, Tenn.:United Methodist advocates for Imagine No Malaria will host screening parties of HBO's new movie, "Mary and Martha," starring Oscar® winner Hilary Swank and Oscar® nominee Brenda Blethyn. The movie follows the journey of two women who meet in Africa and work to raise awareness of malaria, a preventable and treatable disease that claims a life every 60 seconds.

Imagine No Malaria, a campaign of The United Methodist Church dedicated to reducing death and suffering from malaria by 2015, has raised more than $31.2 million to date, trained more than 5,800 community health workers and distributed more than 1.2 million mosquito nets in Africa. Because of comprehensive programs like Imagine No Malaria, malaria's death rate is now almost half of what it was in 2006.

To join the fight against malaria, families will host an entertaining watch party of HBO's "Mary and Martha." Anyone can download the Imagine No Malaria movie-watch party kit to get exclusive invitations, event planning tips, themed recipes, easy instructions for making mosquito costumes, fun activities for children, information about the fight against malaria and other resources.

"Mary and Martha" premieres Saturday, April 20 at 8 p.m. EDT on HBO. It is also scheduled to air Sunday, April 21 at 12:45 a.m. and 5:30 p.m. and Tuesday, April 23 at 10 a.m.

Following the parties, watchers can join the cause and donate to Imagine No Malaria by texting 'MOM' to 27722. One hundred percent of donations go to fighting the disease in Africa.

"A child shouldn't have to die from a mosquito bite," said Imagine No Malaria spokesperson Bishop Thomas Bickerton. "Malaria is both preventable and treatable."

"Our campaign has distributed over 1.2 million life-saving insecticide-treated mosquito bed nets, but we need millions more. Just $10 provides a net which can protect up to four people from the silent killer."

Additional opportunities to raise awareness continue next month starting May 5, as NBC affiliates begin airing "Killer in the Dark: An Extraordinary Effort to Combat Malaria." The documentary, produced by United Methodist Communications, is about the intense and continuous work being carried out to help make the world malaria-free.

Get your party planning kit now at imaginenomalaria.org/maryandmarthapr.

About Imagine No Malaria
Imagine No Malaria is an initiative of The United Methodist Church to raise $75 million to end preventable deaths from malaria in Africa by 2015. With a comprehensive approach to fighting this killer disease, Imagine No Malaria empowers the people of Africa to improve health infrastructure and achieve a sustainable victory over malaria. For more information, visit ImagineNoMalaria.org.

Media contact:
Diane Degnan
(615) 742-5406 (office)
(615) 483-1765 (cell)

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