Volunteers from the local community
The worst of the Ebola outbreak is over and, on the 17th of March 2016, Sierra Leone reached 42 days without a confirmed Ebola case, however, this is the second time the country has had to pass this marker and, on the same day of this declaration, Guinea announced new confirmed cases. The need to remain vigilant is as important as ever. Now the outbreak is over our efforts have shifted to helping the country stay free of the disease through ensuring that standards in the facilities are maintained and communities continue with preventive measures.
Over the last year your support has allowed us to focus on getting vital messages into the community at a time when trust in the healthcare system was severely damaged. In the coming months we will use the generous donations from the Global Giving community to work with community health facilities and the local community to deliver projects that not only protect against a re-emergence of Ebola but will also deliver long term, life saving benefits to communities in desperate need.
One of the lessons learnt from the outbreak was that infection was all too easily passed on. We have focused on tackling this in facilities though training, mentoring and supplies and in the community with taps, equipment and advocacy. Now we will take this a step further through a waste management project that will teach communities how to minimise the risk of passing on diseases such as Ebola and tackle some of the major causes of child and maternal mortality including malaria and diarrheal diseases. We have identified 47 mosques, 20 churches, 35 primary schools and 120 youth organizations within the communities in which this project operates and we plan to invite two or more members from each of these groups to attend interactive community dialogue sessions. We will reach a total of 345 influential community stakeholders with health promotion messages on waste management and child health.
As well as a period of intense work to ensure Ebola does not resurface, we will also be using this milestone to reflect and plan the next stage of the response. Tok fo Pikin Welbodi with guidance from the Welbodi Global Giving Project team will be finalising a 12 month action plan and we look forward to sharing this with you all when it is complete.
Thank you to everyone that has supported us over the last 18 months, we could not have achieved what we have without you. The next stage of this project will present new challenges, however, we are confident with your help we can help Sierra Leone remain resilient and Ebola free.