The Liberia National Red Cross or LNRC on Saturday, 19 April officially kicked off a social awareness campaign against the deadly Ebola virus in Liberia, parading from Jacob Town to the Chicken Soup Factory Community where a victim was reportedly hosted for a night.
But climaxing the launch of the Social Mobilization Campaign against Ebola over the weekend, the Red Cross Disaster Management Director Ambulai Perry, decried very low support, and called for logistical and financial support.
He described as very little, the Liberian Government’s support to the Red Cross, and called for more support from the government, the World Health Organization and other partners.
Currently, Mr. Perry says the Federation of the Red Cross Movement has approved a $94,000.00 through the Red Cross’ Disaster Relief Emergency Fund or DREF which he says they are using to carry on the campaign.
But citing operations expenses and other demands for safety for volunteers, among others, he said the money was little and required more support. Mr. Perry told journalists after the campaign that the Social Mobilization will be taken throughout Liberia’s 15 counties by volunteers mobilized across the country.
He said the volunteers will be trained to pass on key messages as regards the spread of Ebola and how it can be prevented, so as to curtail confusion and fears among citizens.
The Red Cross is also involved with what is called “Contact Tracing,” a process in which it pays visits on a daily basis to a person who may have come in contact with someone confirmed to have Ebola for a period of 21 days to establish whether or not, they too have been affected.
“Every day, we will have to take the temperature of that contact. Why? For the period of 21 days, so that is the work we are doing. We have started this in two counties- Margibi and Montserrado. We have trained our volunteers and we have a team in place called the Chapter Emergency Response Team – CERT,” he said.
He said the response team is responsible to carry on the contact tracing and social mobilization throughout Liberia.
At the formal launch inside Chicken Soup Factory in Gardnersville, women, men and children and community leaders gathered outside a market house. Community leaders, including the chairman Mr. Henry Worklo as well as the governor, pledged support and asked the Red Cross to extend the campaign across Montserrado County.