April 24, 2014 By Hawa Amara
Women in the Media Sierra Leone (WIMSAL) yesterday joined the fight to zero Ebola cases by complementing the Sierra Leone Association of Journalists’ (SLAJ) ‘Yellow Ribbon Campaign’.
SLAJ launched the campaign in February as part of commitment to working towards eradicating the 11 months outbreak in the country.
Since then, many groups and individuals have identified with the campaign by wearing the yellow ribbon and positively working to attain zero Ebola cases in the country.
WIMSAL, with support from United Nations Women and United Nations Mission on Ebola Emergency Response (UNMEER), yesterday hosted an orientation in the conference hall of SLAJ headquarters on Campbell Street to educate their members about the campaign.
In her welcome address, WIMSAL president Asmaa James stated that, “Women will take to the streets to educate people about the ‘Yellow Ribbon Campaign’ to end Ebola in the country.”
Dr. Julius Spencer, who spoke on behalf of SLAJ (in his capacity as Chairman of the SLAJ Ebola Response Committee), said the ‘Yellow Ribbon Campaign’ was an initiative aimed at ending Ebola.
He commended WIMSAL for partnering with SLAJ to deliver the campaign messages to the media and ordinary people to ensure zero infection.
Also, representative of UN Women, Dr. Mary Okumu, said the campaign was meant to drive the Ebola virus out of the country and the sub-region.
“The virus is worse than the rebel war in the country. It has killed well over 3,000 people. The women should use this campaign to galvanize communities to ensure an end to the outbreak,” she said.
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Gender Adviser of UNMEER, Baindu Massaquoi, said they regard the ‘Yellow Ribbon Campaign’ as a viable way to eradicating the Ebola virus, adding: “We want more women to participate in this Ebola zero campaign during the rally on Independence Day.”
She advised women to always abide by rules aimed at preventing against the Ebola virus by ensuring they report any suspected cases to the nearest health center.