Supporting Those in Quarantine

04/11/2014

Being in quarantine and isolated from the rest of the communities is never comfortable. But what if you’re in quarantine and aren’t getting fed or properly taken care of because of limited resources? What if your child isn’t able to receive the education he or she needs because there are no teachers? 

Christian Aid food distribution

Christian Aid delivering food packages for quarantined homes

Thousands of people in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia in quarantine are experiencing this reality as we speak - some are forced to break quarantine in order to obtain food while others are simply left with no education. But thanks to DEC member agencies’ involvement, children and family members in quarantine are given glimpses of hopes again.
 
Christian Aid has been working to feed 2,100 people in quarantine in Kailahun and western part of Freetown, areas which are most affected by the Ebola disease. They have been providing to those who need it to prevent the risk of further spread.
 
“People infected with Ebola are desperately searching for food and are in turn exposing others to the disease. They are jostling with people in the market and infecting others through bodily contact,” says Jeanne Kamara, country director for Christian Aid in Sierra Leone
 
But of course, food isn’t the only concern – many children and parents have had to worry about their futures. Through education support children who are in quarantine can continue their studies and feel a bit more at home in what for them can be an unfamiliar environment.
 
“At the moment all schools in Liberia are closed and the education of children is in danger of completely coming to a halt,” says Mike Noyes, ActionAid’s Head of Humanitarian Response. “Parents are very concerned about their children falling behind. Many families cannot afford to hire private tutors and others are afraid to hire them because of the potential risk of contact and infection.”
 
Action Aid is delivering school packs to children living in quarantine, as well as providing psycho-social support. “Children living under quarantine in Liberia and Sierra Leone are understandably frightened and unsettled,” adds Mike Noyes. 
 
Life in quarantine is never easy but DEC Member agencies are doing their best to provide food and education to those in need.