This morning, Boot Camp 4 participants visited the village of Thieneba Seck to talk to El Hadji Momar Diop about his innovative community-led malaria prevention and awareness program. After El Hadji’s 12 year-old daughter Amy died of malaria along with 5 other village children and many pregnant women in 1999, community leaders gathered to ask questions about what this misunderstood disease was, what caused it, and how the community could stop it. After talking with local health workers, El Hadji and the men and women of Thieneba implemented an aggressive campaign to fight back against malaria. The villagers attempted to eliminate mosquito breeding sites, put together a program to ensure that everyone was using their mosquito nets properly, and started an intense education campaign for school children. After years of work, Thieneba Seck and the surrounding area are now malaria-free.
Afternoon sessions were focused on malaria science, with presentations by: Dr. Alexis La Crue from the University of South Florida on the “Plasmodium life cycle, Anopheles life cycle, and malaria’s effect on the body;” followed by Dr. David Sullivan of the Malaria Research Initiative at Johns Hopkins University on “Best practices in treatment and prophlyaxis and realities in the field.”