nets for life

Standard Chartered Annual Report 2010

  • Great place to work
  • Protecting the environment
  • Community investment
    • Our approach and progress
    • Employee volunteering
    • Seeing is Believing
    • Living with HIV
    • Goal
    • Nets for Life

Nets for Life

Our fight against malaria

Some 765 million people around the world are at risk of malaria, including millions across our markets. Transmitted through mosquito bites, malaria claims the life of almost 800,000 people every year. However, much progress has been made on the Millennium Development Goal to halt and reverse the incidence of the disease. By the end of 2010, approximately 289 million insecticide treated nets (ITNs) had been delivered to sub-Saharan Africa, and more than 75 million people had received protection in the form of indoor residual spraying (WHO World Malaria Report 2010).

According to the Secretary-General of the WHO, this achievement is largely due to a broad range of partners coming together in the fight against malaria. Standard Chartered is one such partner. In 2006, we joined forces with five other donors to launch Nets for Life and provide one million long-lasting insecticide treated nets (LLITN) across 15 African countries. By the end of 2008, 1.5 million nets had been distributed ahead of schedule and under budget.

We committed USD5 million in October 2008 to distribute a further five million treated LLITNs by 2013. Since then, Nets for Life has distributed a total of 4.7 million nets and we expect to reach the target of five million nets distributed by the end of Q1 2011.

Since its launch in 2006, Nets for Life has saved the lives of approximately 86,000 people, mostly women and children. The success of the programme can largely be attributed to an unprecedented achievement in 2010. In that year alone, we distributed a total of 3.7 million nets – an increase of over 300 per cent – through a number of large campaigns. Over four million people were reached by our messaging on malaria prevention. In Ghana, we were asked by the National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP) to distribute 1.2 million nets. The government of Ghana has subsequently asked us to return to three regions to conduct a similar hang-up campaign using our Nets for Life methodology.

In June 2010, we were awarded the 2010 GBC Business Excellence Award for our Nets for Life partnership with ExxonMobil, Coca-Cola Africa Foundation, White Flowers Foundation, Episcopal Relief and Development, and Starr Foundation.

Instilling a net culture

Establishing a net culture is critical to the long-term impact of our programme. We look to change community norms, ensuring that sleeping under a LLITN every single night becomes standard practice. We have worked hard to tailor our messages about net use to specific cultures and communities, and have trained more than 40,000 community members and Standard Chartered employees as Malaria Agents. The value of the nets we provide becomes evident to those using them consistently and correctly.

How do we know it is working? We conduct baseline data surveys and monitor key indicators to evaluate whether our targets are being met, and whether corrective measures to our distribution programme are required. 8

8 At baseline, only four out of every 10 people knew the mode of malaria transmission. Now, almost nine out of 10 people know how malaria is transmitted; At baseline, only one out of every 10 pregnant women received insecticide prevention treatment (IPT) as the effective drug for malaria prevention. Now seven out of 10 pregnant women have received at least two doses of IPT during their last pregnancy

Building a sustained future

In 2011, we will continue to focus on acquiring nets from local programmes, which will enable us to use our core funding towards strengthening Nets for Life. Having reached our initial target to distribute a total of five million nets by 2013, two years ahead of schedule, we will look at ways in which our programme can develop. We have achieved a huge amount since Nets for Life started in 2006, but we must be mindful of the future challenge in ensuring that high levels of coverage are maintained. When it comes to tackling malaria, sustained action is critical.

Nets for Life: Case study

The inspiration behind our Malaria Agents

A personal tragedy inspired Irene Mdami, a credit underwriter in our Tanzania business, to become a Malaria Agent for Nets for Life in 2010. She explains: “In July 1995, I lost my first born son, Eric Brian, to malaria. He was aged just 11 months. It was a very bad experience, and I couldn’t believe the doctor when he told me the cause of his death was malaria. I was told that malaria has very tricky symptoms that may be confused with diseases like typhoid or even flu. From that day on, I have despised the disease and vowed to educate as many people as I possibly can about the dangers of malaria and how to prevent it.”

Irene got the chance to train members of the community in the Kisarawe District at an event organised by Standard Chartered Tanzania. As well as distributing nets to the community she was involved in a door-to-door sensitisation campaign to educate men, women and children about the dangers of malaria. Says Irene: “I met many people who were familiar with malaria and its effects, but didn’t know how to protect their surroundings. I was very surprised at how many people have very little understanding of the disease. It was a very rewarding experience to be able to share my knowledge and educate the community.”

Standard Chartered Annual Report 2010 Great place to work Protecting the environment Community investment Our approach and progress Employee volunteering Seeing is

Bed Nets 4 Life


Malaria is a disease of the blood that is transmitted to people by an infected female mosquito. Malaria infects and destroys red blood cells (anemia) and clogs the capillaries that carry blood to the brain (cerebral malaria) or to the vital organs.

The Ugandan Ministry of Health estimates that malaria kills 320 people in Uganda every day. This is based on reported cases, yet in rural villages many cases go unreported. Ninety percent of malaria related deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa and a child under the age of five years dies from malaria every 30 seconds.


Coartem is an artemisinin-based combination therapy (ACT) that is the most effective malaria treatment recommended by WHO. Coartem is safe, effective and an affordable anti-malarial for vulnerable populations in Africa. A child with an uncomplicated case of malaria can be cured within three days after receiving a dose of Coartem. It is recommended over the older treatments such as chloroquine and fansidar, which have become less effective because of a rise in drug resistance.


Think Humanity freely gives bed nets to refugees and people from isolated and underdeveloped villages in western Uganda. The people we serve are from various countries: Uganda, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Sudan and locations where people have been forced to leave their country due to war.

WHO DO WE HELP at the Think Humanity Kyangwali Health Center?

Think Humanity provides treatment for various diseases at a reduced cost to the people in the Kyangwali Refugee Settlement Camp and surrounding villages. We also have free health days and give out free mosquito nets and birthing kits on a regular basis.

Think Humanity has purchased and distributed approximately 101,689 bed nets in Uganda as of January 14, 2020.

Our mission is To help save lives and provide hope for refugees and underdeveloped communities in Africa by improving provisions for healthcare, clean water, education and socio-economic development. ]]>