NEW YORK, Feb. 24, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE ) — The END Fund has announced a $7 million three-year grant from The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust in support of efforts to reduce the burden of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) in Angola. This grant marks the Trust’s first engagement in the global movement to control and eliminate NTDs.
The grant will support the scale-up of integrated, community-based mass drug administration to treat over two million children and adults at-risk of intestinal worms, schistosomiasis, and lymphatic filariasis in three of the most rural, impoverished provinces of Angola. The program will include a water, sanitation and hygiene education (WASH) program at over 2,000 schools. Additionally, the grant leverages millions of dollars worth of donated medicines from pharmaceutical companies.
“We are honored to have the Helmsley Trust join us to improve millions of people’s lives in Angola. The Trust’s support comes at a critical moment in the fight to control NTDs as we move towards integrated treatment across the country and beyond,” said Ellen Agler, Chief Executive Officer of the END Fund.
NTDs are a group of parasitic and bacterial infections that affect over 1.5 billion of the world’s most impoverished people, including 800 million children. NTD infection leads to malnutrition, anemia, and stunted growth in children. Adults can suffer debilitating illness and disfigurements, and even death, from the effects.
“We are so pleased to be able to scale up the END Fund’s work in Angola. NTD treatments have been shown to be one of the most cost-effective ways to keep children in school and help adults live healthier, more productive lives. We hope that the Trust’s investment brings attention to this important issue and encourages other donors to join the global movement to control and eliminate NTDs,” remarked Walter Panzirer, a trustee of the Helmsley Charitable Trust.
The Trust joins the portfolio of other END Fund strategic investors in Angola, including Dubai Cares and the Legatum Foundation.
About The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust
The Helmsley Charitable Trust aspires to improve lives by supporting effective nonprofits in health, place-based initiatives, and education and human services. Since 2008, when the Trust began its active grantmaking, it has committed more than $1 billion to a wide range of charitable organizations. The Trust’s Vulnerable Children in Sub-Saharan Africa Program, which began in 2013, invests in evidence-based interventions that provide at-risk children with greater access to education, improved food and nutrition, and clean water and sanitation. The program’s initial grantmaking efforts have supported initiatives in Kenya, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Angola and Ethiopia. For more information on the Trust and its programs, please visit www.helmsleytrust.org.
About the END Fund
The END Fund is a private philanthropic initiative to combat NTDs engaging a broad spectrum of individuals, foundations, and corporations in the international movement to control and eliminate the most prevalent NTDs, as outlined in the January 2012 London Declaration on NTDs, the World Health Organization’s, Accelerating Work to Overcome the Global Impact of Neglected Tropical Diseases: A Roadmap for Implementation, and national Ministry of Health NTD control plans.
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CONTACT: Sarah Marchal Murray, Senior Vice President