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Feb 26, 2014. By

By Rick Reilly, ESPN.com Columnist and Nothing But Nets Champion

nbn-bdayA lit birthday candle means a lot to me, since I’m so old I remember when we invented fire. Good times.

I still make a wish when I blow out my candles. Sometimes they even come true. But not everyone is that lucky.

Every year, more than half a million children in Africa die from malaria – that’s one child every 60 seconds. Those children didn’t have the chance to celebrate their next birthday, much less see a wish come true.

So I had a new wish on my birthday this year. I wished you’d “Donate Your Birthday.”

The UN Foundation’s Nothing But Nets campaign has a new way to help you celebrate by saving lives. Together, we can send anti-malaria bed nets and help ensure that children in Africa have a chance to celebrate their next birthday. I donated my birthday earlier this month to Nothing But Nets, and now you can too.

Pledge to donate your birthday!

Follow these simple steps:

  • Submit your birthday information to Nothing But Nets and a month before your birthday, you’ll receive the tools you need to launch a personal “Donate Your Birthday” campaign.
  • In the lead-up to your birthday, spread the news of your commitment and ask family and friends to help you protect the birthdays of children in Africa.

Remember, every $10 you raise helps Nothing But Nets and our UN partners purchase and distribute life-saving bed nets to protect African families from malaria.

Here’s to one more birthday wish.

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