Dr. Anwar Kahn, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Islamic Relief, a United States based world’s recognized non – profit has requested all its affiliates, sympathizers and Friends to offer regular prayers for the suffering people Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia, pray for the logical conclusion of the Ebola crisis and courage for the afflicted.
The Chief Executive also requested that positive messages with leverage and reasoning be sent out to counter negative messaging about Ebola, its affected Countries and People and further entreat them to make monetary couple with responsible donations.
Dr. Khan made this appeal last Friday, on October 2014 during his concluding remarks and in response to contributions made by Ambassador Ibrahim. S. Conteh Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy of Sierra Leone and his other counterparts from the Embassies of Guinea and Liberia at a West Africa Ebola Round Table discussion held in Washington DC.
During his presentation, Ambassador Ibrahim S. Conteh gave a brief synopsis of efforts made by the Government of Sierra Leone, Sierra Leoneans living abroad, members of the International Community and other interventions, and said “we need more.”
Amb. Conteh said “the government of President Ernest Bai Koroma has modified Education, Religious and communal behavior regarding burial and other activities all in a bid to combat the spread.
He appealed for more help to combat Ebola and said, “We just can’t do it on our own. “We don’t have the capacity.
“If not contained, Ebola could lead to economic crisis of epic proportions. Said Amb. Conteh: adding, “Since the outbreak, Sierra Leone’s GDP is on track – dropping from 11.3%.
AMBASSADOR CONTEH MAKING A POINT
“Developments stalled and gains are rapidly being lost. Said Amb. Conteh. Adding “major medical and pharmaceutical needs are not just for Ebola, but for common chronic disease and maternal health.
“In order not to duplicate efforts, NGOs, can either be in touch with the Embassy of Sierra Leone for facilitation or be directly in touch with our Ministry of Health.
“It is not too excessive to say we need everything, when at the same time it would be difficult to duplicate efforts as the need increases.
“We also need technical professionals to handle certain medical equipment. “The supplies will be useless without the required expertise.”
Other representatives of Guinea and Liberian Embassies made their own respective contributions, by making their cases and requests.
Earlier, Jihad Saleh Williams of Islamic Relief USA who moderated the session said “Islamic Relief is concern about the current state of the epidemic, the needs gap, and how NGOs can best coordinate. “We are here to discuss how to effectively mobilize resources that are available in the faith based and humanitarian community in response to the Ebola epidemic in the three most affected countries”.
During the interaction, Sam Worthington, CEO of Interaction said “You have embraced the international community, and it’s time for us to embrace you.
He urged representatives of more than ten Non – profit who were in attendance to be in consultations with the Ebola working group, to enable them coordinate a range of groups for efficiency.
“There is not a shortage of resources, but a shortage of focus for those resources. “The issue is coordination.” Said Sam Worthington. Adding, “the biggest issue is lack of staff.
“This also has to do with our opposition to closing borders: Many volunteers won’t go unless they know they can come back.
“We want to provide nation and states with a more organized NGO community. “We’re making NGO Aid maps that feed into the UN system. “You can look at what project goes where, and gaps.” Said Sam Worthington.
Concluding, he said Islamic Relief USA thanked distinguished guests for the input of affected countries and Muslim groups, and urged them to go to work.
Some of the faith groups represented were, Helping Hands USA, American Muslim Health Professionals, United Muslim Relief, Interaction, Life for Relief, Baitumaad, Michegan, Zakat Foundation, Muslim Aid, United Muslim Association of America and Islamic Relief.