Beckham joins Malaria No More UK campaign

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Soccer superstar David Beckham and British tennis No 1 Andy Murray joined Prime Minister Gordon Brown to launch new charity Malaria No More UK, a non profit organisation set up to tackle the health crisis caused by the disease Malaria.

Beckham, Murray and British Olympic gold medal-winning heptathlete Denise Lewis have been named as members of the leadership council of the new campaign and were helping to mark its launch.

They posed for the cameras in front of a blue mosquito net draped over the front door of 10 Downing Street, the Prime Minister's official residence.

Malaria, despite being treatable, threatens half the world's population and pregnant women and children are particularly at risk.

The disease strikes down as many as 250 million people a year, killing more than a million, with one African child dying of the disease every 30 seconds.

"When I step out on to the pitch at Wembley Stadium there can be up to 90,000 people watching me and the England team. That’s a lot of people," Beckham wrote in The Sun.

"But that’s the same number of children who die in Africa from malaria every month — a whole football stadium of lost young lives.

"But we are in a position to save these lives. By sleeping under a simple mosquito net a child can be protected against malaria.

"Malaria is the biggest killer of children in the world, with a child dying every 30 seconds. And there are around 250 million cases of malaria worldwide.

"But what most people don’t realise is that malaria is preventable. These kids can be saved.

"Malaria No More UK wants to get bed nets to everyone in Africa who needs one by the end of 2010. It’s an ambitious goal — but it can be achieved if we all get behind it.

"For just £5 you can buy a mosquito net, which will protect a mother and child, or brother and sister, for up to five years.

"Please help us. Buy a net, save a life. It really is that simple.

"Get behind the campaign and together we really can make malaria no more."

Malaria No More UK aims to provide everyone in Africa with a mosquito net by 2010, and hopes to eradicate the disease by 2015.

You can make a life-saving donation – or find out how you can do more to back the campaign – at

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