With the objective of promoting the recovery and reintegration of survivors of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), Alliance for Women Advancement (ALWA), a local nongovernmental organization embarked on a charitable gesture in selected communities in Monrovia during the Christmas and New Year holidays.
According to ALWA executive director, Mrs. Doris Maholo- Saydee, the gesture was intended to restore dignity and put smiles on the faces of survivors of EVD, many of who are facing stigmatization and rejection in their communities. Sadly, most survivors – especially children who have lost their parents or caregivers to the virus can barely afford daily meals.
Accordingly, the process, which has been described as “Operation Share the love of Christmas and New Year”, is part of ALWA’s ongoing psychosocial support to survivors of EVD-during the festive season. ALWA recognizes that this gesture is part of its social contribution to the EVD affected communities especially during the festive period when people including survivors are in need of assistance to celebrate their holidays.
“Rationale for the holiday donation is to show love, care and share with one another. During Christmas and New Year seasons in Liberia, children look to their parents for food and special gifts including new cloth, shoes and toys. For many children who have been affected by the Ebola Virus disease, their hopes of celebrating Christmas and New Year were crushed with the death of either one or both parents or their caregivers. Therefore, putting food on their tables and providing new cloth for those children whose lives have been shattered by EVD is part of ALWA’s own way of restoring hopes and making vulnerable children to smile during festive season.
“We have been providing a variety of items such as rice, cloths, mattresses and cash to survivors of EVD in selected communities in Monrovia including the Du-port Road, Zubah Town, GSA, Pipeline and Police Academy. This initiative was made possible through voluntary contributions from ordinary Liberians for survivors and orphans to buttress the government and international’s effort in the fight against Ebola in Liberia” Founder and Chief Executive Officer Mrs. Doris Maholo- Saydee.
Since October 2014, ALWA has been working to restore hope and dignity to Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) survivors through the provision of psychosocial and reintegration support. The organization has so far reached over 108 individuals in 24 households and hopes to start concentrating on addressing long-term needs of survivors as it kicks off regular program activities in 2015.
Founded in 2012, ALWA is a Liberian owned and community driven non-governmental organization dedicated to advancing the rights and welfare of women through a community-based approach that builds on collective strength and resources of communities to tackle factors that undermine the advancement of women and communities.