Save the Children Federation

Save the Children is the world's leading independent organization for children. Our vision is a world in which every child attains the right to survival, protection, development and participation. Our mission is to inspire breakthroughs in the way the world treats children and to achieve immediate and lasting change in their lives.
Dec 29, 2014

Ebola Update from Save the Children

Ebola Outreach
Ebola Outreach

Save the Children has had a strong presence in West Africa for years. We are working around the clock to help stem the spread of the Ebola virus and check its catastrophic impact on children and their families. Our staff played a vital role from the onset of the epidemic in bolstering community engagement in affected regions – a factor which is now thought to be a major reason behind the improving situation in Liberia. We are grateful to our brave staff who join other Ebola fighters in earning Time Magazine's Person of the Year in 2014.

As the nature of the epidemic changes, so must our response approach. Save the Children is working now to contain sporadic outbreaks that are occurring in hard to reach remote communities in the affected countries. In Liberia, we will continue to identify, triage, test and refer patients to beds in Ebola Treatment Units (ETUs) through our two Community Care Centers (CCC).

We will also transform our static CCC model to a more nimble one that will bolster surveillance and contact tracing, and will develop Case Investigation Teams to respond swiftly to individual outbreaks by setting up isolation units, mobile labs and rapid referral mechanisms. We will look to use simple rapid response structures such as pop-up tents that will enable us to concentrate on more active case finding in hot zones to test and triage probable cases quickly.

Our three-pillar strategy to combat Ebola aims to reduce transmission and provide access to life-saving care, restore and strengthen health systems to increase access to treatment for non-Ebola conditions, and mitigate impact on essential services (child protection, education, nutrition, food security and livelihoods) by rehabilitating essential infrastructure and systems.

Liberia:

In Liberia, the two ETUs we built (in Bong and Margibi), which are now managed by International Medical Corps (IMC), continue to treat patients in isolation wards and provide expert medical care and treatment. In Margibi, our two CCCs (in Dolo Town and Worhn) help contain transmission. We continue to train community health workers and traditional midwives on infection prevention and contact tracing; provide health care facilities with urgently needed medical supplies; set up hand-washing stations at health facilities; and supply food and water to Ebola patients. We have also rehabilitated and supplied transit centers for children and helped identify foster families to care for children. New developments include:

 

  • We opened our second 92-bed ETU in Margibi, which will also be run by IMC.
  • We will be using simple, rapid response “pop-up” structures to respond to rural and less accessible areas where small outbreaks are occurring.
  • Over 1,700 people were reached with psychosocial support, including some 940 children, as well as street children living in shelters.
  • We reunited 30 children with their families.

 

Sierra Leone:

In <a "href="http://www.savethechildren.org/site/c.8rKLIXMGIpI4E/b.9206809/k.95FB/Sierra_Leone.htm">Sierra Leone, Save the Children continues to manage the 92-bed Ebola Treatment Unit in Kerry Town with over 500 frontline medical staff and provide staff in primary health clinics with supplies and training for infection prevention and control. Our staff has led the scaling up of child registration and family tracing and reunification activities. We also provide psychosocial counselling and reunification packages, including food and clothing, to children who return to their families or to an alternative caregiver and secure financial support, as well as toys, clothes and food, to interim care centers for unaccompanied and orphaned children. New developments include:

 

  • We participated in school reopening meetings and are working with the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology to strengthen district-level coordination of an education in emergency response.
  • We conducted a training on basic child protection and child safeguarding policy for 300 people.
  • We mobilized water, sanitation and hygiene committees for the maintenance of public latrines.

 

Guinea:

In <a "href="http://www.savethechildren.org/site/c.8rKLIXMGIpI4E/b.6150371/k.C79D/Guinea.htm">Guinea, we continue to train health workers, volunteers, Ministry of Transport workers and teachers on Ebola prevention and protection messages; conduct general awareness raising and radio programs; support community health workers with contact tracing; provide protection kits (soap and other supplies) to health centers, schools, public services and transportation stations; and provide psychosocial, nutritional and social support for children whose families have been affected by Ebola. New developments include:

 

  • We conducted large awareness-raising sessions in Kerouane and Siguiri in response to a new spike of Ebola cases in these areas.
  • Water, sanitation and hygiene kits are being procured to support schools as they prepare for reopening.
  • We trained teachers and officials on child rights.

 

Mali:

In <a "href="http://www.savethechildren.org/site/c.8rKLIXMGIpI4E/b.6150453/k.B24A/Mali.htm">Mali, we continue to support contact tracing following the six cases of Ebola here. We trained our staff to implement infection prevention and control, and procured protective and sanitation equipment for health centers and other public facilities. Community-focused messages for media, health workers, schools and other community stakeholders will be translated into local languages and disseminated.

How You Can Help

Please support Save the Children’s global mission. Your tax-deductible gift gives children in the U.S. and around the world what every child deserves – a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. When disaster strikes, we put children's needs first. We advocate for and achieve large-scale change for children. We save children's lives.

Please keep children in your thoughts for a bright new year.

http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/save-the-children/

Have a wonderful holiday. Thank you again for your support. 

Happy New Year!

Dec 29, 2014

Ebola Survivors Released from Care Center

Lamine* survived Ebola; now we
Lamine* survived Ebola; now we'll help him thrive

Save the Children has discharged the 60th cured Ebola patient from its Sierra Leone treatment center, as survival rates at its health facility continue to rise.

Six-year-old Lamine* was discharged back to the care of his family on Monday, four days after he was admitted to the Save the Children-run treatment facility. Lamine, whose father passed away from Ebola a week ago, tested positive for Ebola on Friday but responded well to treatment and, thanks to the care of the medical teams, quashed the disease quickly.

"Children can be particularly vulnerable to Ebola, and their condition can either improve or deteriorate very rapidly," said Save the Children's Oliver Behn. "Our teams, which include medical teams from Sierra Leone, Save the Children, Cuba and the UK, provide high quality care 24 hours a day, and are making a real difference in increasing Ebola patients' chances of survival, and ensuring more children like Lamine recover."

"The center also ensures dignity and comfort for all patients, namely those who arrive in the terminal stages of the disease," Behn continued.

Lamine* was picked up at Kerry Town by his maternal aunt and uncle on Monday, and reunited with his mother and baby brother that afternoon. On Monday and Wednesday, five other survivors, including six-year-old Aminata* who was critically ill with Ebola and malaria when she was admitted, were also discharged from the center. Six others are currently being discharged today, on Christmas eve.

These successes brought the total number of Ebola survivors at Save the Children's treatment center, so far, to 61. Each survivor receives some money to help them replace the furniture and items they may have had to destroy or have lost, a set of fresh clothes, food rations, and some hygiene items.

It remains vital that patients with symptoms consistent with Ebola be tested and, if confirmed as positive, start treatment as early as possible. The earlier this can be started, the better the chances of defeating the disease.

Mr. Behn said: "Kerry Town has the capacity to test and treat many more patients, and is working closely with the National Ebola Coordination Center and the Ministry of Health to ensure patients who need our medical care are referred as soon and as early as possible."

Survivors are accompanied home by Save the Children staff, who liaise closely with families and communities to ensure they do not face stigma upon their return and instead are given support.

*Names have been changed to protect identity and patient privacy.

Dec 29, 2014

Thank You from Save the Children

How You Helped Infographic
How You Helped Infographic

Dear Friends,

It is a privilege for me to thank you for responding with such compassion in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The support you provided has made it possible for us to stand by children
whose lives were overturned in a single day.

Sandy is a story about great loss, but also about even greater resiliency. What struck me most is
how people coped − from a family that lost everything but was still grateful for having each other
to a teenage boy who lent a hand at one of our Child-Friendly Spaces while schools were closed
as a way to deal with his displacement. 

Our goal has been to bolster that resiliency. From providing food and blankets to setting up
Child-Friendly Spaces in shelters and supplying schools with educational materials, your contributions touched lives in many ways in the weeks after the storm.

We’ve helped child care and community centers resume programming and provided our signature
Journey of Hope program to support children’s and caregivers’ emotional recovery. To date, our
efforts have reached more than 53,000 people, including 39,570 children.

But Save the Children is going one step further. Hurricane Sandy made it clear that we can never be too prepared for emergencies. Today, 90% of American children live in communities at risk of natural disasters. 

Every workday, the safety of nearly 68 million U.S. children is in the hands of school officials and caregivers while parents are on the job. The lesson Sandy drove home is that it is always the poorest families that are hardest hit − those who are least able to withstand the blow of a disaster. While we need to focus our emergency preparedness work to reach all children, we especially need to pay attention to the poorest of communities where there are few or no resources to help evacuate, rebuild or recover.

Thanks to your compassion, families affected by Hurricane Sandy are on a path to recovery.

How You Can Help

Please support Save the Children’s global mission. Your tax-deductible gift gives children in the U.S. and around the world what every child deserves – a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. When disaster strikes, we put children's needs first. We advocate for and achieve large-scale change for children. We save children's lives.

Please keep children in your thoughts for a bright new year.

http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/save-the-children/

Have a wonderful holiday season.

Happy New Year!

 

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