Samaritan’s Purse is partnering with the government of Liberia’s Ministry of Health to contain the Ebola outbreak in Western Africa.
Ebola is one of the deadliest viruses in the world, killing up to 90 percent of those infected. Almost 180 cases have been reported in Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Mali and at least 107 deaths. Officials fear the horrific virus could spread throughout the region. There is no cure or a vaccine – the only way to stop it is to keep it from spreading.
Samaritan’s Purse is partnering with the government of Liberia’s Ministry of Health to contain the outbreak. We are conducting public education and awareness campaigns in Lofa, River Gee, and Gbarpulu counties and Monrovia, the capital city and location of our field office. So far, we have reached more than 14,000 people with awareness messaging and have distributed buckets, cups, and soap.
We are also providing emergency medical supplies to a partner hospital and transporting medical response personnel and supplies to various parts of the country via aeroplane and helicopter. A pallet with hospital supplies arrived on this week, and Samaritan’s Purse is recruiting medical personnel. The helicopter and aeroplane have collectively transported 400 buckets, cups, and soap and 3,000 awareness brochures.
“The reason we are really concerned about this situation is that Ebola is a deadly virus,” said Aaron Ashoff, the Samaritan’s Purse response manager who worked in Liberia for a year in 2012. “Most people that contract it die, and there’s no cure for it, so you need to act fast. It is viral, so it spreads rapidly. It’s highly contagious and the problem is that it’s happening in a lot of areas where there are a lot of people that live in communities and move around a lot, so what we have is a contagious deadly outbreak of a disease that is being spread.”
Samaritan’s Purse has been working in Liberia since 2003, when the country’s civil war came to an end. We have helped tens of thousands of Liberians through clean water and hygiene programmes, care for HIV/AIDS orphans, nutrition feeding, latrine and hospital construction, farming, and care for victims of gender based violence.
Please pray that the outbreak will quickly be contained, and that our staff and ministry partners will convey the love and compassion of Christ as they work.