LONDON — Engine group agency MHP has been appointed as the communications partner for Every Breath Counts, a global coalition of 40 organisations with a mission to end preventable child pneumonia deaths by 2030.

The agency is developing a new digital campaign to drive awareness of the disease, which is the biggest infectious killer of children globally, claiming over 800,000 lives every year: more than HIV/AIDS, diarrhoea and malaria combined.

MHP’s brief is to deliver a digital programme to highlight the devastating impact of the disease on children’s lives. Working with digital partner Groovy Gecko, it will be running a 24-hour Twitter livestream from the coalition’s account throughout World Pneumonia Day today (12 November).

The broadcast will demonstrate the mortality statistics from childhood pneumonia around the world, with an educational video playing alongside a real-time counter that will increase by one every 39 seconds: the frequency at which children globally are dying from the disease.

MHP will also support the coalition in the run-up to the first global forum dedicated to childhood pneumonia. The Fighting For Breath forum will take place in Barcelona in January, with the aim of putting pneumonia on national and global health agendas and showing that simple interventions such as vaccinations, antibiotics and medical oxygen could save hundreds of thousands of children’s lives.

The Every Breath Counts Coalition, made up of UN agencies, businesses, donors and NGOs, has committed to supporting governments in 10 countries with some of the largest populations of children at greatest risk of death from pneumonia.

The organisation’s advocacy and communication lead, Androulla Kyrillou, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with MHP to bring to life a social media strategy that highlights the importance of World Pneumonia Day. This milestone is an opportunity to launch a social media campaign that raises awareness of pneumonia and the devastating impact that this has on children and their families across the world.”

MHP Health director Arabella Moore added: “Our support for the coalition and its ambitious goal to reduce childhood pneumonia deaths is an important step in MHP’s commitment to amplify our role in global health policy and advocacy, and to build new and strategic partnerships with the non-for-profit sector to help address the biggest challenges in health worldwide.”