A note on this page's publication date
The content we last updated in 2011 appears below. This content is likely to be no longer fully accurate, both with respect to the research it presents and with respect to what it implies about our views and positions.
Published: 2009; Updated: 2011
How do charities address malaria?
Many charities run programs to distribute insecticide-treated bednets to protect against mosquitoes that transmit malaria. We have seen few charities focusing on other anti-malaria programs such as medicines to treat malaria or spraying pesticide to kill mosquitoes.
Based on a review of the evidence for insecticide-treated net distributions, we believe that under $2000 can save a life. For more information, see our full evidence review of mass distributions of insecticide-treated nets.
What are the challenges of finding a great malaria charity?
Donors should be aware that while ITNs are a highly cost-effective way to save lives, charities' claims of the low cost of saving a life with an net can be overblown.2 $10 may buy and distribute a net, but not every child who sleeps under a net would have died otherwise, and even properly used nets do not offer 100% protection.
Where should you donate to fight malaria?
For donors interested in using their donation to fight malaria, we recommend:
- Against Malaria Foundation, which distributes insecticide-treated nets. AMF is extremely transparent, publishing the status of each distribution on its website. For more, see our full review of the AMF.
See list of leading causes of death (2004).
- Nothing But Nets claims on its website that if people buy a Nothing But Nets t-shirt or hat, "Ten dollars from every purchase will send a net and save a life of a child in Africa." (Nothing But Nets. It's Easy to Help. http://www.nothingbutnets.net/its-easy-to-help/ (accessed April 29, 2010). Screenshot available at http://www.givewell.org/files/ExternalWebsites/NothingButNets/easytohelp....)
- Fox Soccer Channel donates $10 to Malaria No More for every goal scored in a campaign called "Every Goal Saves a Life." (Fox Sports. Every Goal Saves a Life. http://msn.foxsports.com/foxsoccer/nomalaria (accessed April 29, 2010). PDF "snapshot" available at http://www.givewell.org/files/ExternalWebsites/foxsports.pdf