New York City, April 25, 2012—To commemorate World Malaria Day (April 25, 2012), ARCHIVE (Architecture for Health In Vulnerable Environments) is launching a new global campaign. The campaign, titled Construire La Prévention Du Paludisme (Building Malaria Prevention), is an effort to advance ARCHIVE's mission- providing architectural solutions as a means to improving health in vulnerable communities. The campaign’s video highlight may be seen by following this link
Malaria—a vector-borne disease transmitted through female Anopheles mosquitoes—remains one of the most serious diseases in the world. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), there were over 200 million cases of malaria reported in 2010 and over 600,000 deaths due to malaria worldwide. Over 90% of deaths caused by malaria occurred in Africa. According to the Cameroon Coalition Against Malaria (CCAM), malaria is responsible for 50% of severe illnesses and 40% of deaths among children under 5 years of age in Cameroon.
With Cameroon serving as its pilot location, ARCHIVE's new campaign aspires to reduce the rate of disease transmission by demonstrating that housing and environmental designs can reduce the spread of vector-borne diseases, specifically malaria. The competition's open format focuses on promoting multidisciplinary collaboration among various disciplines and the general public. Participants in the competition are asked to re-imagine the role that housing design plays in the prevention of malaria. ARCHIVE aims to create awareness of the success that an integrated approach can achieve in combating malaria in Cameroon through the involvement of global and local actors in all stages of the project.
Dr. Rhima Khabbaz, MD, Director of the Infectious Diseases Division of the Centers for Disease Control, has said that, "Infectious diseases remain leading causes of illness and death throughout the world. Their impact is particularly devastating in less developed countries, where global killers, including malaria and other communicable diseases, decrease the quality and span of lives and impede economic and social development. Overcoming these challenges requires multi-sector partnerships that can work collectively to strengthen public health infrastructures and develop innovative ways to improve infectious disease prevention and control."
The one-year campaign begins with a global design competition, calling on architects, engineers, health specialists, and the general public to combine their skills and knowledge in order to produce innovative housing and environmental designs that minimize the entry and breeding of mosquitos. The campaign's website, www.archiveglobal.org/cameroon, will serve as the platform for professionals and students from various disciplines to create a profile and find teammates to partner with locally and internationally.
Three winning designs will be selected by a panel of experts drawn from Cameroon and around the world. The winning designs will then be used to inform the housing and environment improvement strategies in Yaoundé, Cameroon.
"We've known for more than a century that living conditions are directly associated with malaria transmission – particularly in regions where the disease is endemic. Urbanization has been identified as a contributing agent due to deforestation and poor waste management," said Peter Williams, founder and Executive Director of ARCHIVE Global. "Indoors, where the malaria-carrying mosquitoes attack, requires better protection to complement, not replace other effective tools such as bed-nets. We hope that this sheds light on the way in which two key development strategies can be addressed simultaneously and cost-effectively – improved living conditions and improved health outcomes among the most vulnerable."
Recent studies support the argument that applying screens to habitations can substantially reduce the number of indoor mosquitoes and help prevent anemia—a symptom of malaria in children. Many of the world’s urban poor store water in overhead tanks and cisterns in their homes, providing breeding grounds for malaria carrying mosquitoes. Construire La Prévention Du Paludisme aims to demonstrate how increased collaboration among environmentalists, health professionals, urban and rural planners, aid agencies, and governments can improve living conditions and prevent the spread of malaria. Starting in Cameroon – ARCHIVE will work to demonstrate the effectiveness of multidisciplinary collaboration one community at time.
n 2011, ARCHIVE broke ground on its first construction project for new and innovative housing, Kay e Sante Nan Ayiti (Health and Housing in Haiti). The project in Haiti began with a design competition that attracted entries from all over the world—a competition similar to Construire La Prévention Du Paludisme. Kay e Sante Nan Ayiti focused on building housing that would mitigate the spread of diseases like tuberculosis and malaria. In Haiti, five winning housing designs were selected, and are currently being built.
For media information, photos, or interview requests, please contact Marcela Ospina-Maziarz firstname.lastname@example.org,