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24th August 2012
Lack of hygiene and sanitation has resulted in the outbreak of cholera in Sierra Leone, infecting over 10,000 people and causing deaths of hundreds, since the beginning of this year. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) the “rate of new cases has accelerated rapidly since the beginning of August.” The President of Sierra Leone has declared the escalating cholera epidemic a “humanitarian crisis”. There is an urgent need to contain this disease and treat those infected, as the death toll continues to increase.
As an initial response, Muslim Aid’s Child Sponsorship Programme partner in Sierra Leone has organised meetings with the sponsored children and their families. Precautionary measures and advice were given to the participants in an attempt to reduce the risk of anyone catching the disease.
Muslim Aid is in close contact with its local partners who are active in Sierra Leone and are in the process of developing a suitable response plan.
This year Muslim Aid Day will be observed both here in the UK and overseas on the theme of “Investment in Healthcare: Promotion, Provision and Access”, where causes and effects of different heath issues and diseases such as cholera will be highlighted. Through this day Muslim Aid will reemphasise the importance of raising awareness about sanitation and hygiene, implementation of healthcare programmes such as midwifery training and ensuring that men, women and children who are in need have access to adequate healthcare specially during emergencies.