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BRAC pleased with its contributions to Liberias Ebola fight

Mulbah Kessellie/Benjamin S. Taingay
An open air counseling  gathering of BRAC in Dolo Town, Margibi County
An open air counseling gathering of BRAC in Dolo Town, Margibi County

(www.elbcradio.com/May 27,2015)-BRAC International Executive Director, Faruque Ahmed, has expressed satisfaction for the organization’s continued contribution to Liberia’s fight against the Ebola virus disease.

Director Ahmed said BRAC’s level of support to Liberia in the Ebola fight greatly helped the country overcome the pandemic.

He praised the international organization for its USAID support-project titled, Psycho-social Survivor Support Project and called for more sustaining programs to enable Liberians and other residents continue restraining the virus.

Mr. Ahmed made the statement recently in Dolo Town, Margibi County, where BRAC held an open air counseling meeting with the community residents.

In remarks, a religious leader of Dolo Town, Lassanah Kamara, thanked BRAC for the program and urged the organization to extend the exercise to other local communities.

Mr. Kamara said though Liberia has been declared Ebola free, there was a need for concerted efforts to de-stigmatize survivors and discourage acts of discrimination against them.

The gathering brought together survivors and health promoters from Dolo Town, religious leaders, county health teams, social workers, among others.

The project is a platform that gives Ebola survivors an opportunity to share their experiences with other people during and after the Ebola outbreak.
It is also meant to reduce stigmatization and discrimination against survivors and to re-integrate them into their respective communities.

As part of activities under the project, BRAC has embarked on holding series of community, group and Ebola affected survivor counseling in various areas across Liberia.

At the Dolo Town Community counseling, survivors told their life experiences through story-telling to showcase how they contracted the virus, what was it like being admitted at Ebola treatment units, and how they survived the deadly disease.

Earlier, Ebola Survivors from the community and environs shared their harsh experiences with the Ebola virus disease at the gathering, beginning with an adolescent survivor, Josephine Wlehple.

Ms. Wlehple told the gathering that her mother is the only surviving family member now as all of her other siblings have died from the virus infection, and an elderly woman, Musu Weayea, said she lost all of her relatives to Ebola.

Also explaining her ordeal, a middle aged woman, Janet Wee, broke in tears for a moment as she began her story.
Madam Wee told the group that she lost her four children and husband, leaving only her youngest son, who survived along with her, describing her experience as the most difficult moment in her life.

“It’s hard to believe that Ebola killed all my children and husband and when I was discharged from the ETU, I was totally stigmatized and discriminated against by friends and other community members, simply because I am an Ebola survivor,” she sadly said. 

For her part, an elderly woman survivor, Musu Weayea, explained that she and some family members got affected by the virus, noting that most of her relatives died as a result of the infection.

Also, a middle aged woman, Janet Wee, said she lost her four children and husband, only she and her smallest son survived from Ebola.

In a sorrowful tune, she added: “This type of life is too hard for me to accept right now. It is too hard for me to live with it.”

 


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