As quarantined homes grumble over food supply EduNations intervene
EduNations, a United States based nonprofit organization devoted to building schools, infrastructure and a future for the forgotten children across the continent of Africa Sierra Leone inclusive, has stepped in robustly to bolster efforts in ameliorating the plights of persons caught up in quarantined homes and holding centers.
In an interview with Samuel Sesay, EduNations’ Country Director in Sierra Leone, he explained that the organization has various pre/primary and junior secondary schools in different parts of the country including Rokassa in Port Loko district, Mabum Station in Tonkolili district, Mapainda, Mayatta and Fintonia in Bombali district, and Gbenekoro in Koinadugu district.
Mr. Sesay said EduNations’ schools are not only built and staffed by the organization, but pays competitive monthly salaries to all staff timely and provides learning/teaching materials for both teachers and pupils. No fee is paid by the pupils and uniform is provided annually to each free of cost, Mr. Sesay added.
It is this humanitarian thinking according to Mr. Sesay that has left the organization with no alternative but to contribute in its own way to help address the food needs of persons in quarantined homes and holding centers for Ebola suspected cases.
Since the outbreak of the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), EduNations board of directors, he said, has busied itself finding answers to questions as to how the organization will continue to provide support to the country, adding that one laudable decision taken was to continue to provide a full monthly salary to its teaching staff across the country in a bid to prevent additional economic hardship on them and their families who are already badly affected psychosocially by the EVD.
“Recently, together with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church and the Sierra Leone Alliance, EduNations trained seven Food Monitors and provided them with brand new motorcycles to work closely with the District Health Management Teams (DHMT) of Bombali, Tonkolili, Port Loko and Koinadugu to asses and provide support to quarantined families and holding centers”, Mr. Sesay said.
Over the last months alone, Mr. Sesay said the organization has supported beyond the usual 21 days quarantined period four households in Bombali and Port Loko districts and another two households are being supported in Bombali district currently.
With regards the quantum of support, Mr. Sesay stated that for every household with more than 10 quarantined persons, the package includes two bags of 50 kilograms rice, 5 gallons palm oil, one bag (25 kilograms) onions, one bag (25 kilograms) salt, assorted packets of maggie seasonings, a box of foam soap, sanitary items, hot pepper, fish and bundles of water.
Asked why EduNations has decided to intervene in this way, Mr. Sesay explained that providing enough and timely food, water and hygiene supplies to quarantined homes is key to breaking the chain of transmission of the Ebola virus.
Mr. Sesay ended by pledging the continued support of EduNations in the fight against Ebola, stressing that “Our personnel have been properly trained and know exactly what to do both for their own self-preservation and for that of the households visited”.
By Theophilus Sahr Gbenda
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