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Ebola: How YOU can help families

WP ebolaThe Waterloo Partnership is appealing for donations to help families devastated by the ebola outbreak in its namesake community in Sierra Leone, west Africa.

So far more than £3,500 has been raised by the charity to enable health workers in Sierra Leone to raise awareness of the deadly virus and ultimately save lives.

The Waterloo Partnership was set up ten years ago to forge links between the north Merseyside town and Waterloo, Sierra Leone, one of the worst hit areas of the country’s civil war and now ravaged by ebola.

Schools have organised exchange trips and children in both countries have learned about each other’s cultures, as well as raising funds for health, education, farming and building projects.

Latest figures reveal at least 150 people in Waterloo, Sierra Leone, have now died after contracting ebola and the death toll is rising fast. A total of nearly 4,000 people have died in west Africa with five new cases being reported every hour, says Save the Children.

Dr Fred Nye, chair of the Waterloo Partnership, said: “Sadly it appears that ebola is spiraling out of control in Waterloo. Deaths are being reported on a daily basis with the total now heading towards 200. For a town with a population of around 40,000 it is simply devastating with almost certainly more tragedy to come.

“The stories coming out of Waterloo are simply heartbreaking – it is a community gripped with fear, like so many towns across west Africa. Eleven members of one extended family died and health services are stretched beyond capacity.

“For our charity it is particularly upsetting because we have seen such progress over ten years and, indeed, we have made many friends during our many exchange trips.

“Donations can help ease the suffering of families. We have people on the ground ready to help. For instance, we organised a health education event in Waterloo to promote better understanding of ebola and to encourage people to take precautions such as hand washing and disinfection.

“We have also funded food and water supplies for those in quarantine, as well as protective equipment – but we can do even more with further public donations.”

To donate please visit the charity’s website at www.waterloopartnership.co.uk and pledge cash online or send a cheque to the Waterloo Partnership, c/o 23 Bonnington Avenue, Crosby, Liverpool, L23 7YJ or ring 0151 924 2813.

An update on ebola in Waterloo will be given at the charity’s AGM on Thursday 9th October at St Edmund’s and St Thomas’ Primary School, Oxford Road, Waterloo, at 7.30pm.