Progress is being made in reducing the child death rate across the world – however, more work has to be done if an ambitious reduction goal is to be achieved by 2025.
The Christian organization empty tomb revealed that from 1990 to 2018, the number of children under age five dying per every 1,000 live births dropped from 93 to 39 – a 58% drop. This decline was assessed by the World Health Organization (WHO), which listed the progress toward reaching the target reduction goal as "substantial."
Even though progress has been made, empty tomb noted that the targeted reduction goal ("promise") set by world leaders in 1990 and 2000 has not been reached yet.
"Data analyzed by empty tomb suggests that the number of children under age five dying around the world would have been 4.1 million in 2018 if the reduction goals had been met," the Illinois-based group announced in a press release. "Instead, the number of children under age five who died in 2018 was 5.3 million. That means … 1.2 million children under five died in 2018 who would have lived if those target reduction goals had been met."
According to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, many nations need to do more to get their child mortality rates down. "The global community has achieved significant gains in maternal and newborn health, but progress has slowed and is not evenly distributed around the world," the Foundation states.
In order to achieve the goal and decrease child mortality, WHO issued a call to switch from "business as usual" and ramp up the effort, and empty tomb asserts that churches can give the needed boost through its Mission Match campaign to reach the target by 2025.
Because churches in the United States have access to distribution channels in many of the areas with high child mortality rates, empty tomb uses its Mission Match program that enables them to choose which distribution channel they want to support and apply for matching funds.
To demonstrate increased progress, empty tomb is now seeking 10 leader congregations and needs thousands more to apply for matching funds in order to reach the reduction goal by 2025 – congregations that are located in the U.S. from historically Christian traditions.
But this is only part of the plan to reach success, says empty tomb, which recently published "The State of Church Giving through 2018: What If Jesus Comes Back in 2025?" – the 30th edition of its series.
"[To augment the effort,] empty tomb is also seeking venture philanthropists to help get Mission Match 'on steroids' in the effort to mobilize many more churches to reach out in Jesus' name and increase help for the children who are dying from treatable causes," the Christian group divulged.