Happy birthday, Nate!

Nate Beaird of Des Moines, Iowa, has a bold request. Will you give $30 as a present for his 30th birthday?

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He has set a goal to raise $300,000 so World Vision can provide 50,000 insecticide-treated bed nets to help prevent the spread of malaria.

Nate was unenthusiastic about the idea of typical birthday presents, so he decided to do something that was potentially life-changing instead. He says at least two children can sleep under a single net, so the provision of 50,000 nets could potentially save 100,000 lives. In order to raise the money, Nate will need at least 10,000 people to donate $30 for his birthday, which he will celebrate on October 20.

Nate has set a goal of raising $300,000 to distribute 50,000 insecticide-treated bed nets.

Nate, who serves as the digital communications manger for Open Bible churches, has utilized social media to draw people to his website, HappyBirthdayNate.com, where they can donate.

“I had been looking at the number of people on my Facebook newsfeed. I started to think, ‘What can I do with this platform?’” he says. “Thirty dollars is nothing -- especially when we know it’s for such a practical and doable thing, to save lives.”

Nate notes that the “Kony 2012” video -- which urged people to publicize the crimes of Ugandan warlord Joseph Kony -- achieved a spectacular response and demonstrates the power of social media to galvanize support for important causes. Nate's birthday wish has gained momentum, and has been covered in newspapers, television, and radio.

He has even expanded his website to allow others to "become a birthday hero" and raise funds for mosquito nets. Money donated through Nate’s website goes directly to World Vision to fund the nets. He launched the website on March 17 and so far has raised more than $4,300.

Visit HappyBirthdayNate.com to learn more and make a donation to help provide insecticide-treated bed nets. This inexpensive intervention can last for several years, providing vulnerable children with a shield against malaria-carrying mosquitoes while they sleep.

Host a Malaria Sunday at your church. You can join with your congregation to make a difference in the global fight against deadly malaria.

Read more on the World Vision Blog about: malaria

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