UNICEF praises Angolan campaign to score against killer kid diseases

“[The campaign is] a perfect example of how sports, in particular football, can be used as a platform for social mobilization,” UNICEF Communications Chief Joe Paulo de Araujo said Thursday. “And we couldn’t have better advocates than the football stars,” he added.Using the football pitch as a metaphor, the TV spots feature measles getting a red card for foul play while the football stars kick out polio and football nets keep out mosquitoes. Over a three-week period, the nationwide ‘Enjoy a healthy life’ campaign intends to immunize nearly four million children under 5 years-old against measles and polio.The immunization drive is part of a strategic government plan to reach two Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) – a set of time-bound targets for tackling poverty, illiteracy and other global ills – by aiming to reduce maternal mortality and under-five mortality rates, which are among the highest in the world in Angola, UNICEF said. On average, one in seven Angolan women dies during childbirth and 260 of every 1,000 children never reach the age of six. read more