The Los Angeles band, Dawes, led by singer TaylorGoldsmith, arrived in Rwanda on March 3, 2013 in an effort to hand out potentially life-saving bed nets to protect refugees from malaria.
These refugees in Rwanda are fleeing from the ongoing violence in the neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The Dowes trip in collaboration with officials from the United Nations Foundation’s Nothing But Nets campaign is to protect displaced persons from the mosquito-borne disease.
Goldsmith, his drummer brother Griffin, bassist Wylie Gelber and keyboardist Tay Strathairn also met with experts from the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) on March 4, 2013 to learn about the severity of the situation.
The musicians are the latest celebrities to draw attention to the cause – Mandy Moore, Ashton Kutcher and Jonah Hill have all previously done their bit to raise awareness about the U.N. campaign.
The group also visited the volcano national park on their first day of arrival.
“Refugees already face incredibly difficult conditions,” said Chris Helfrich, Director of Nothing But Nets.
“These families fleeing violence shouldn’t have to worry about a deadly mosquito bite. Every 60 seconds a child dies from malaria-but a simple bed net can keep them safe.
Through the trip to Rwanda and beyond, Nothing But Nets and Dawes will raise awareness among the band’s fans and inspire them to send nets and save lives.”
Nothing But Nets has worked with UNHCR since 2008 to provide vulnerable refugee families fleeing conflict or natural disasters with insecticide-treated mosquito nets to keep them safe from malaria.
They have provided more than 1 million bed nets to refugees living in camps across Africa; as a result, malaria dropped from the leading killer of refugees to the number five cause of death.