*See reports for most recent updates* In response to the ongoing Ebola epidemic, this project will train BRAC's all-female frontline force of 400 community health promoters to stop the spread of the virus in remote communities in Sierra Leone. These women, trained by BRAC, are known in their own communities and are going door to door, educating people on how to prevent Ebola and recognize symptoms. But they need funding to pay for flyers and leaflets, food and travel costs, and disinfectant.
Ebola is spreading at a frightening speed in West Africa and urgent action is needed. It has been declared the deadliest Ebola outbreak ever. In Sierra Leone, the deadly virus was first detected in late May in the eastern Kailahun distrct, near the border with Guinea. Within a month, 239 cases were reported across four other districts. The death toll across four countries now exceeds 660. Sierra Leone's top doctor, hailed a national hero for treating over 100 victims, has even fallen ill.
Ebola is spread through direct contact with bodily fluids of those infected, and remote communities are ill-informed about how to diagnose, treat, and prevent it. BRAC, an organization with decades of experience in empowering the poor to provide their own health care, already has nearly 1,000 local health workers in the field in both Liberia and Sierra Leone. The project equips those in Sierra Leone, where the crisis is acute, with training, posters, leaflets and disinfectant.
By informing communities and raising awareness in affected areas of Sierra Leone, this project will make communities better equipped to combat Ebola and similar diseases in the future.