Stepping in to Help

first_imgThirteen-year-old little Bendu Dunbar is one of several Ebola orphans around the country, who can look back and say that the deadly Ebola virus disease (EVD) has indeed left an everlasting scar on them.The disease attacked Liberia in March 2014 and exposed its already weak or non-existent health care delivery system. Before the outbreak, there were reports in 2013 of one doctor to at least 14,000 Liberians. Out of the 250 registered and licensed doctors for the population of 3.5 million, 175 were Liberians and less than 25 percent of those doctors were specialized.   The EVD killed nearly 10 foreign and Liberian medical doctors, including Dr. Samuel Brisbane, who had more than two decades of practice under his belt.As people contracted the disease, they began dying in their number. At least 8157 as at January 7, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), have so far contracted the virus in Liberia and 3496 persons have died.Included in this number, are the relatives of 13-year-old Bendu Dunbar and many other Ebola orphans around the country. Ms. Dunbar tearfully, told the Daily Observer Wednesday, January 7, how she lost 13 members of her family, including both of her parents.“My people were just dying one after another,” she narrated sadly, fighting to hold back her tears.She and her relatives used to live in Dolo Town, one of the hardest hit communities in Margibi County.Most of whom she lost to the virus were adults. The 13-year-old, a third grader, is one of the six children left behind to fend for themselves if no one or the government steps in to rescue them.Like Bendu, her siblings and 54 other Ebola orphans with similar stories, they have now been sheltered at the Taffi Dollar Children’s Welfare Center (TDCWC), along the main highway leading up to the Roberts International Airport (RIA), in Margibi. The center is about a mile from the new national cemetery.The head of the welfare center, Pastor Wilmot B. Yalartai told the Daily Observer how his church had to step in to help cater for the children of those dying from Ebola.Pastor Yalartai narrated that the wife of a fellow pastor, late Rev. Augustine Zarr, just a stone’s throw from his compound, had contracted the virus and died, leaving the Pastor and kids to struggle, too.“When I saw this, I said to my church members, we need to do something. I made some research about the virus and we began administering anti-bodies to the Pastor and his kids. We even donated some food so that they could eat at least three times every day,” he narrated. He, however, stated that that pastor died but his kids got well.According to him, that was the turning point for him and his church—Abundant Life Chapel, which runs the welfare center in partnership with the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection.“We started going to Dolo Town and other places to administer to orphans and their remaining relatives about the love of Christ, telling them that no hope is lost in Him. We also donated food items to them,” Pastor Yalartai, whose facilities have both boys and girls dorms, a high school and others, told this newspaper.He said after hosting a church service with orphans and surviving relatives mid 2014, some of the surviving relatives, who attended, “begged” for him to take their kids in after seen his facilities and amenities.“That is how I began taking in the kids. I have space for at least 100 but have so far only been able to take in 60 because of resources problem,” he added.As he listed the center’s immediate needs, he said budget for sponsorship per month for each of the kids is US$60.“I also need 30 pieces of laptops for the computer lab and a 15-KVA generator,” he further said.The center’s school is free for boarding students or orphans and can accommodate at least 300 children from the neighboring communities. It presently has 14 staff, including a nurse, teachers, matron, dean, security and cooks.He disclosed to this newspaper that since he took in the kids two months ago, it was only last Saturday, January 3, that the government, through the Incident Management System (IMS), gave the center some food, which can carry the center for at least two weeks.He appealed to international donors, including WFP, UNICEF, Plan International, Save the Children and the Government of Liberia to come and help sponsor the kids.He also appealed to all international churches, especially the Creflo Dollar Ministries, based in Atlanta, Georgia, which help them construct the facilities to cater for kids.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

CWG probe: I’ll give satisfactory answers, says Kalmadi

first_imgFile photo of former OC chairman Suresh Kalmadi.The Commonwealth Games corruption probe is gaining steam after the arrest of two former Organising Committee officials but an unfazed OC chairman Suresh Kalmadi on Wednesday said he would give “satisfactory answers” to the government panel investigating the matter.Kalmadi, who has maintained a low profile ever since the controversy-ridden Games concluded on October 14, said that the V.K. Shunglu committee has been entrusted with the task of probing the entire Commonwealth Games and not only the Organising Committee.”We can answer all the questions satisfactorily. Our job was to conduct the Games and we have the answers to anything related to that,” Kalmadi told PTI from Guangzhou, where he is attending the 16th Asian Games.Former Comptroller and Auditor General V.K. Shunglu was appointed as the head of the committee to probe the corruption allegations that marred the build-up to the mega-event here.Kalmadi emphasised that the Organising Committee was not responsible for the all the construction and other works for the Games.”The Organising Committee was responsible for Rs 1800 crore. We had no role in constructions and the work at the stadiums. We can only answer for these Rs 1800 crore,” he said.Kalmadi said that the international delegates, who are here for the Asian Games, have praised the conduct of the Commonwealth Games as well as the opening and closing ceremonies.”But I have been pained by the constant negative publicity by the media. The trial by the media has been unfortunate. More so when we are ready to answer all questions. I have all along maintained that there should be an inquiry,” he said.advertisementOn the arrest of two of the former OC members — TS Darbari and Sanjay Mohendroo — in connection with alleged financial bungling in the Queen’s Baton Relay, Kalmadi said that both of them had been sacked by the OC.”The Organising Committee has already taken action against them after reports of corruption. The OC CEO (Jarnail Singh) has already terminated their services,” he said.Kalmadi also hailed the performance of gymnast Ashish Kumar, swimmer Virdhawal Khade and wushu player Bikramjit Singh — all three of whom bagged historic bronze medals during the Asian Games.”After a gap of 24 years, we have won a medal in swimming. We have won a medal in gymnastics for the first time. In wushu also we have done well, it all goes to show that other sports are also coming up in India,” Kalmadi said.Ashish became the first Indian gymnast to clinch an Asian Games medal by securing a bronze in the Men’s Floor event of the Artistic Gymnastics.The 19-year-old Khade scripted history by becoming the first Indian swimmer in 24 years to clinch an Asian Games medal by notching up a bronze in the 50m butterfly event.”It is a great achievement and we are proud of them. It shows that we are rising as a sporting nation and going in the right direction. We need to keep up this trend,” Kalmadi said.- With PTI inputslast_img read more

Parents and Guardians Reminded of Vaccination for Children

first_img The effects are amputation of an arm or leg, paralysis of limbs, hearing loss, convulsions, brain damage and death. Story Highlights With the 2018/19 school year slated to begin in September, the Ministry of Health is urging parents and guardians to adhere to the schedule outlining clinic appointments for the vaccination of children. With the 2018/19 school year slated to begin in September, the Ministry of Health is urging parents and guardians to adhere to the schedule outlining clinic appointments for the vaccination of children.In a recent JIS News interview, Acting Director of Family Health Services in the Ministry, Dr. Melody Ennis, noted that clinic appointments must not be avoided, because of the deleterious effects that vaccine-preventable diseases can have on a child.The effects are amputation of an arm or leg, paralysis of limbs, hearing loss, convulsions, brain damage and death.“They also need to be reminded that, under law, they are liable if they wilfully prevent their children from being vaccinated,” she said.The Immunisation Regulations of 1986, which were amended in 2013, as well as the adolescent and adult vaccination policies, stipulate that all children under seven years of age must be adequately immunised prior to school entry.This applies to children entering day care, nursery, preschool, basic school and primary school, whether publicly or privately operated.Immunisations mandated by law for children prior to school entry are at birth, the BCG vaccine for protection against severe forms of tuberculosis; at six weeks, three and six months old, polio; pentavalent vaccine for protection against diphtheria, pertussis (whooping cough), tetanus (locked jaw), haemophilus influenza type B, and hepatitis B.Others are 12 and 18 months old, the MMR for protection against measles, mumps and rubella, and booster doses for polio, diphtheria, pertussis and tetanus are given at 18 months old and four to six years old to complete the schedule.The human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination for protection against cervical cancer is now being offered to grade-seven girls as part of the national immunisation schedule. However, the vaccine is not mandatory.Dr. Ennis acknowledged that Jamaicans have taken the safety and well-being of their children seriously, with a significant number of children from birth to six years being comprehensively immunised against the 10 targeted diseases.They include influenza type B, hepatitis B, tuberculosis, diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, poliomyelitis, measles, rubella and mumps.“It must be emphasised that 95 per cent coverage is required to adequately protect the individuals and the nation,” Dr. Ennis informed. In a recent JIS News interview, Acting Director of Family Health Services in the Ministry, Dr. Melody Ennis, noted that clinic appointments must not be avoided, because of the deleterious effects that vaccine-preventable diseases can have on a child. last_img read more

Diseased Turtles in TCI Waters

first_img Poachers slammed with seven charges; some escape Teenaged Turtles tagged and released use any unused pics from govt release yesterday Recommended for you Related Items:disease, tci waters, turtles Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciaes, 08 Sept 2015 – Recent studies have found an increasing amount of diseased turtles in Turks and Caicos; this as a result of fishermen harvesting out turtles, keeping the healthy ones, and then discarding those that appear diseased which ultimately leads to a wider species loss through promoting the spread of disease. This finding has come about after researchers began studying incidents of green turtle disease. A herpes virus is believed to be the causative agent of the disease. The viral disease manifests as pink tumors that appear on the turtles’ flesh. The disease affects the turtles’ vision and impedes their movement as a result many turtles eventually die of starvation.Researchers say the numbers of infected turtles are steadily rising, over a two-year period in the waters around Turks and Caicos Islands; it was found that some 13 percent of green turtles had the disease. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Poachers caught raping TCI waters of some 2,000lbs of catchlast_img read more