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Katharine McPhee performingKatharine McPhee performing

Katharine McPhee in Africa to 'Smash' Malaria

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See what I did with that title? That’s what happens when you’re on your third cup of coffee after a night of toddlers not sleeping. You’re welcome.

But back to the real story – Katharine McPhee, star of the hit television show ‘Smash’ (which has taught me more about Marilyn Monroe than I ever cared to know), has ventured to Africa on behalf of Malaria No More.

As we wrote back in January, McPhee is focusing on MNM for all of 2012 – with this trip the first part of her commitment to helping eradicate the tragic disease.

“I’ll be involved in helping people, especially the young, get vaccinated and helping put mosquito nets up,” the 28-year-old said of her trip. “I provided the financing for a little school with two classrooms in Burkina Faso (West Africa). The woman who runs the school actually came down with malaria and was very sick for several months. I’d love to go back and see the see the school in person and meet her.”

According to The Hollywood Reporter, McPhee landed in Ghana earlier this week, taking part in some local ceremonies and handing out nets. Fulfilling the goal she mentioned above, she’ll next travel to Ouagadougou, Burkina Fasco to visit the school she helped rebuild.

Such efforts on behalf of celebrities (others working with the org include Mandy Moore, Elizabeth Banks, Sarah Silverman) come at a time when worldwide deaths from Malaria stand at 1.2M per year.

According to a recent study, more than 78,000 children aged five to 14, and more than 445,000 people aged 15 and older died from malaria in 2010. The World Health Organization originally estimated that “only” 655,000 people total had died from malaria in 2010.

To see more of Katherine’s trip to Africa, visit Malaria No More here.

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Andrew F. Kazmierski / Shutter

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