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(MONROVIA, LIBERIA) - Liberia has been declared Ebola free today for the third time, after 42 days without any new cases. But child rights organisation, Plan International urges caution so that no new cases re-emerge this time.
More than 11,000 people have died from Ebola since the outbreak in West Africa in December 2013, which includes over 4,000 people in Liberia.
Koala Oumarou, Country Director of Plan International Liberia, said:
“A major milestone has achieved today in the fight against Ebola. However, there is no room for complacency and we will have to remain on alert to eliminate any chance of the deadly disease making a comeback.
“Communities in Liberia will still have to be cautious and maintain basic hygiene practices in order to avoid new cases.”
Plan International has been at the forefront of the Ebola response in Liberia, helping to rebuild communities by providing health centres, training healthcare workers such as nurses, delivering learning opportunities and providing psychosocial support to children affected.
Abibatu, a 16 year old Ebola survivor, said:
“I feel happy but also sad. I am happy because now we will go back to our normal lives. Children will go back to school. With more girls attending school, hopefully we will see a reduction in teenage pregnancy and child marriage.
“But, when I think of those who have lost their lives, especially my family members who are not here to see this day, I feel sad. I wonder how life will now be without them.”
Mr Oumarou adds: “The Ebola outbreak caused emotional and physical damage to survivors and communities. The country has been deeply impacted by the Ebola outbreak, and addressing the multiple consequences will be critical in the coming years. There is a lot to rebuild.”
Spokespeople are available in-country. For more information or to set up an interview, please contact:
Moses Owen Browne, Media & Communications Coordinator
Plan International Liberia
Angela Singh–Global Press Officer (Africa)
Mobile: +44 (0) 7773 636 180
Plan International started working in Liberia in 1982 to help poor children to access their rights to education, health and protection. Civil unrest forced the organisation to close down in 1993, However, it reopened in December 2006 and continues to help children living in poverty.
Plan International has responded to the Ebola crisis in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. As Plan is a non-medical humanitarian agency, its Ebola response has been designed around helping children and communities survive the disease and its widespread impact on their lives