The deadliest Ebola outbreak in history has already claimed more than 1000 lives in West Africa and is now a global health crisis. Accurate and timely information is a key to stopping the spread of the virus. Through the distribution of our solar and wind-up emergency radios, Liberians living in isolated areas will be able to access information 24/7 to combat rumors and misinformation and learn facts on how to protect themselves and what to do if they suspect someone is infected.
What is the issue, problem, or challenge?
The Ebola virus has dramatically spread since it was first reported 9 months ago in Guinea. The virus is highly contagious and can appear 2 to 21 days after infection, meaning many who are sick are unaware. Critical to halting its spread is access to information on how to identify early symptoms, prevent transmission, what to do and where to go. Rumors are rife, spreading quickly and causing panic. Many poor and rural communities have low levels of literacy and don't own working radio sets.
How will this project solve this problem?
Our solar and wind-up emergency radios will provide access to radio stations that are reporting 24/7 about the outbreak in Liberia. Community radio stations have been briefed by government and international agencies to disseminate accurate information. The government has established special Ebola daily updates on United Nations radio stations. Lifeline Energy will be working with the UNDP to distribute the radios, which also have an LED light to see at night. Information saves lives.
Potential Long Term Impact
Access to information will help halt the spread of the virus and potentially save hundreds, if not thousands of lives in Liberia and the region. The UN estimates that it will take at least 6 months, if not longer, to get the outbreak under control, making radio access all the more important. Liberia has some of the world's lowest and most expensive rates of electricity. Our Polaris radio-lights does not need batteries providing sustainable 24/7 access to local and international channels.
Total Funding Received to Date: $60
Remaining Goal to be Funded: $12,440
Total Funding Goal: $12,500