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WHO Goodwill Ambassador's Newsletter For The Elimination Of Leprosy

NEWS: MORHAN Garners MDG Award

NGO one of 20 winners of Brazil's 4th Millennium Development Goals Award.

MORHAN (the Movement for the Reintegration of People Affected by Hansen's Disease) is one of 20 winners of Brazil's latest Millennium Development Goals (MDG) Award.

The award encourages actions, programs and projects by local government and civil society organizations that help improve the lives of some of the country's most disadvantaged communities, thus making a contribution to achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

MORHAN was recognized for its use of "Telehansen," a free telephone counseling service, as well as mobile health units to assist local municipalities in providing on-the-spot leprosy diagnosis and information to combat the stigma and prejudice that still surrounds the disease.

"Although Hansen's disease has a high cure rate, Brazil ranks first in the world in terms of disease prevalence," says Artur Custodio, MORHAN's national coordinator. "This sad reality is strongly influence by stigma, which excludes patients from diagnosis and health facilities. Therefore, information is the best medicine."

The winners of the fourth edition of the award were announced on May 30 at a ceremony in Brasilia attended by Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff.

MORHAN receives an MDG award. Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff is second from left.


The International Association for Integration, Dignity, and Economic Advancement (IDEA), has been awarded a 2012 Historic Preservation Media Award for their work on the exhibit "Absolute Faith: Saint Damien, Blessed Marianne and the People of Kalaupapa." Presented annually by Historic Hawai'i Foundation, this is Hawaii's "highest recognition of projects that perpetuate, rehabilitate, restore or interpret the state's architectural, archaeological, and cultural heritage." This exhibit forms the foundation for the new Damien-Marianne Heritage Center, established in Honolulu by St. Augustine by- the-Sea Catholic Church.


The 18th International Leprosy Congress will be held in Brussels, Belgium, from September 16 to 20, 2013. The International Leprosy Association (ILA) is organizing a congress program that aims to reflect "the multidisciplinary character of leprosy and attract scientists and health personnel from a variety of scientific and medical backgrounds." For more information, contact the ILA.