Together for Girls: Protecting Children from Violence

By Sara Sandlin and Lorie Burnett, Senior Program Officers at the CDC Foundation

By Lorie Burnett and Sara Sandlin, Senior Program Officers at the CDC Foundation

It is estimated that 150 million girls worldwide under the age of 18 have been the victims of sexual violence. As shocking as these numbers are, the actual occurrence of sexual violence is likely higher because most cases are never reported to authorities due to fear, stigma and discrimination. The consequences of this injustice are profound. Not only do victims of sexual violence experience immense health and emotional effects, but there are also broader social and economic implications for countries, particularly those where the occurrence of sexual violence is more prevalent.

The CDC Foundation is proud to work with international partners as a charter member of Together for Girls, a public-private partnership dedicated to ending violence against children, with a focus on sexual violence against girls. Founded by CDC Foundation Board Member and former Chair Gary Cohen, executive vice president of BD, Together for Girls is a global intersection of governments, the United Nations, civil society and the private sector that have joined together to prevent and respond to violence against children.

Led and owned by national governments, Violence Against Children Surveys have greatly advanced understanding of the scale of violence against children, the links to gender inequality and HIV infection, and the circumstances that make children vulnerable to violence. ©Sandie Taylor/Together for Girls

Led and owned by national governments, Violence Against Children Surveys have greatly advanced understanding of the scale of violence against children, the links to gender inequality and HIV infection, and the circumstances that make children vulnerable to violence. ©Sandie Taylor/Together for Girls

This week, Together for Girls will release the second edition of Safe, a digital magazine designed to raise awareness about violence against children. The magazine will feature data tracked by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), developed as part of CDC’s work to help countries throughout the world measure violence against children and translate that knowledge into action. To date, CDC has conducted Violence Against Children Surveys (VACS) in Cambodia, Haiti, Kenya, Swaziland, Tanzania and Zimbabwe, which have all released their survey results. These surveys—funded in part by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR)—are also underway or planned in 10 additional countries.

Led and owned by national governments, VACS have greatly advanced our understanding of the scale of violence against children, the links to gender inequality and HIV infection, and the circumstances that make children vulnerable to violence.The surveys are also sparking innovative solutions by country leaders and civil society.

  • Swaziland has launched U-Report, a free mobile-based texting tool youth can use to report violence confidentially, get service referrals or simply ask health questions anonymously.
  • Tanzania has trained 4,000 police, social welfare officers, primary school teachers, health workers and district justice officials in child protection in just one year.
  • Kenya is rolling out a successful model of “one stop centres.” Over a two-year period, one centre in Malindi increased the number of violent incidents reported from just 1-2 cases per week to 10-20 cases per week.

Beyond the severe human rights violations, children who experience violence are at greater risk for lifelong, destructive—yet preventable—consequences, including HIV infection, chronic diseases, crime and drug abuse, as well as serious mental health problems. Together, we can build a safer, healthier world for children. The time to act is now.

Together for Girls is a global public-private partnership dedicated to ending violence against children, with a focus on sexual violence against girls. The partnership includes five UN agencies (led by UNICEF with UNAIDS, UN Women, WHO and UNFPA); the U.S. government (CDC’s Division of Violence Prevention, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief and its partners, USAID and the Department of State’s Office of Global Women’s Issues); and the private sector (Grupo ABC, Becton, Dickinson and Company [BD], the CDC Foundation and the Nduna Foundation). Learn more about CDC’s role in Together for Girls: www.cdcfoundation.org/what/program/together-girls

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Cops in Chad and Family Planning – An Unlikely Duo

By Dr. Jimmy Nzau, CARE

By Dr. Jimmy Nzau, Deputy Project Director with CARE

In my work for CARE, an organization that fights global poverty, I never thought I’d have to use my persuasive powers to get out of going to the police station.

I’m a doctor. For the last three years or so, I’ve been focused on making sure women in southern Chad, a Central African country have access to family planning.

It’s no easy feat. Chad’s health system is afflicted by years of instability marked by wars. The country has a population of over 11 million people and is home to a growing number of refugees from nearby war-torn Central African Republic.  Its maternal mortality rate of 1,200 maternal deaths out of 100,000 live births, is among the highest in the world.

Meanwhile, women in Chad have an estimated 6.7 children, with about 60% of girls becoming pregnant before age 18. It’s a patriarchal society with a strong religious influence.

That last part is what almost landed my colleagues and me in jail.

Things were going well at first. We were training providers; getting the right medicines and equipment in place.

We knew we had to get the religious leaders on our side, so we spoke with Imams, pastors, and even priests to open the dialogue about the benefits of family planning.

Dr. Jimmy Nzau, a Deputy Project Director with CARE (center, no uniform) with soldiers in Chad.

Dr. Jimmy Nzau, a Deputy Project Director with CARE (center, no uniform) with soldiers in Chad.

In just two months we saw family planning patients grow to 1100 a month from just 100. We were reaching women in very remote, and underserved areas. We were pretty pleased with ourselves.

Until one afternoon I received a panicked call from Josef, the head nurse at one of the clinics, noting that the police had arrived.  The police had received complaints from a disgruntled husband and family of a woman who was given contraceptives at the clinic without her husband’s permission. This, the police warned, was against the law.

Somehow I calmly asked to speak to the police. I asked if they had heard of the “National Reproductive Health Law of 2002” which guarantees the right of women to choose family planning, with or without, her husband or family’s permission.

When the police replied they’d never heard of it, I offered to come and speak with them about the law.

Instead of being resistant, the men wanted to learn more about family planning. “How long does it last?” they asked. “What does it cost?” and of course, “where can we get it?”

These police officers were husbands, boyfriends, and fathers.  Sex, relationships and fertility deeply matter to men too.

Eventually we facilitated a two-day workshop for the police and military groups. In the end, they committed to act as counselors or conflict negotiators for couples who disagree about the use of family planning.

And CARE was reminded about the importance of engaging men and boys as we go about our important work of empowering women and girls. If you invite men and boys to the discussion, the path to the world we want to create just gets that much shorter.

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Ebola: Lesson learned for future response

Mark Mosely, MAP International’s Vice-President of Relief

Mark Mosely, MAP International’s Vice-President of Relief

Ebola is a virulent virus killing well over half of the people it infects.  This Ebola outbreak is the worst we’ve seen in recent history and caught West African countries, and the many other nations who love and support them  (including the U.S.), off guard.  So what can we do to better prepare for future infectious disease outbreaks?

A key factor in MAP International’s swift response to the outbreak in March, 2014 was the fact that we had extensive inventories of personal protection suits (PPEs) as well as appropriate medicines and supplies on hand and ready to deploy. USAID had entrusted MAP to store, prepare and distribute PPEs in preparation for emerging pandemic threats, like the avian flu, in our implementing USAID Deliver’s Emerging Pandemic Threats program for 6 years. From this experience we know the healthcare community can better prepare in the future by having stockpiles of PPEs, gloves, masks and goggles, medicines and supplies  ready for quick shipment and distribution. These items are key in quickly responding at the initial onset of an outbreak and save the lives of healthcare workers on the front lines fighting the spread of the virus.  It is very possible that if more of these items had been immediately available in West Africa, the worldwide response could have slowed the spread of Ebola considerably.

What could have been done better by the health community this time around?  A large scale response should have been launched at the first sign Ebola was spreading, which was clear to MAP and its partners by March, 2014.  In future outbreaks, we must decisively respond to potential threats within factors present in the regions of origin to prevent the spread of a virus like Ebola and the encompass conditions which foster its expansion. Many parts of West Africa have porous borders i.e. people freely traveled from Guinea where Patient Zero’ was found to Liberia, Sierra Leone, Senegal, and beyond.   When outbreaks occur we must have a clear response plan across multiple channels to allow NGOs who are already on the ground to mount a more efficient response.

 

A shipment from MAP, PCI Global and American Leprosy Missions arrives in Liberia.

A shipment from MAP, PCI Global and American Leprosy Missions arrives in Liberia.

Preparing for future outbreaks is easier said than done, as there are outside circumstances within affected countries that can unwittingly foster the expansion of the outbreak.  That said, the healthcare community and its many players have the training, experience, capacity and humanitarian mandate to more aggressively stem wide spread panic common to the Ebola outbreak.  People have fled hospitals, killed those infected, threatened those helping to provide treatment, and trumped available education and information – based prevention measures. This need for education extends from West African ministries of Health to a majority of Americans previously unaware of the Ebola virus and its deadly characteristics. But we must, as potential ramifications of failure to do so can be counted in 500,000 cases, each with a name, face and a future.

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In the Pursuit of Global Health Equity: Growing the Pie

Russel M. Medford MD, PhD

By Russell M. Medford MD, PhD, Managing Partner, The Salutramed Group, Inc.

Situation:  The global health needs of low- and middle-income countries far exceed the current level of overseas development aid coming from governments and from private philanthropy combined.  These needs also exceed the aid that is likely to be coming from these sources even if they both are scaled up. So there is a clear need for both another source of funding and new and innovative ways to fund and provide stuff, staff, systems and space for improving health and working towards global health equity.

Complication: But the private sector is new to this endeavor and could benefit from partnering from organizations that have worked in global health and we have a better chance of developing innovative programs and products if we put our heads together.

Therefore: There is potential to add a great deal of value by bringing together the global health partners in Atlanta—representing academia, government, non-profit organizations, and the private sector—to work on new ways of funding and innovative approaches to providing goods and services for health.

In our previous blog, we outlined a number of fundamental challenges facing the global health community here in Atlanta and throughout the world. Foremost among them is the recognition that the magnitude of the national and global health problems we face as a nation and world far exceed the government dollars allocated to combat them and that the important and growing role of philanthropy is not now, nor will be in the future, sufficient to fill the gap. The sobering reality is that closing this gap far exceeds the ability of any single organization. We would argue that there is a clear need for the building of a coalition, or alliance, of Atlanta’s national and global health stakeholders, including the private sector, to collectively develop, understand, refine, and implement new and innovative models of collaboration, funding and finance that augment the traditional models used today.

Given the complexities of interdependent societal challenges, priorities and aspirations, one may view each global health organization’s program(s) as but one of multiple “slices” of a fixed, or inadequately growing, pie of today’s traditional national and international resources allocated to health.  To a degree, enhanced competition for limited resources, along with advances in science, technology and communications, will improve the effectiveness of programs to deliver important national and global health outcomes. However, it is also clear that these “fixed pie” improvements are not sufficient to address the full magnitude of the mismatch between available resources and critical issues of national and global health. A sustainable solution must both increase the rigor and effectiveness of these programs but also “grow the pie” by bringing new sources of investment into the national and global health ecosystem.

The value of an alliance of Atlanta’s national and global stakeholders is apparent if one is to collaboratively explore and implement, in a rigorous and multidisciplinary fashion, innovative solutions to “grow the pie”. For example, impact investing is a nascent but increasingly important trend in the for-profit private sector that may have the potential to materially augment current and future national and global health initiatives. Impact investing is an investing approach that intentionally seeks to create both financial return as well as positive social and/or environmental impact that is actively measured.  In its 2014 survey of 125 major impact investment funds, J.P. Morgan and the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) found that this group has 46bn USD under management, has committed USD 10.6bn in 2013 and intends to invest 19% more – USD 12.7bn – in 2014.  While still evolving as a mainstream investment vehicle, multifold growth is expected as impact investments under management represents only .02 percent of the USD 210 trillion global financial market.

Impact investing is but one example illustrating the need for an intentional and proactive partnership between government, philanthropy and the private sector to find new solutions and models if the full resources of society are to be brought to bear on the fundamental issues of human health and well-being, both here and abroad. Through an alliance of its extraordinary national and global health organizations and private-sector financial and corporate institutions, Atlanta is in a unique position to help our nation and the world reach that noble goal.

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The Power of Public-Private Partnerships

By Chloe Tonney, Senior Vice President for External Affairs at the CDC Foundation

By Chloe Tonney, Senior Vice President for External Affairs at the CDC Foundation

Today, public-private partnerships are vital to advancing and improving public health, and we at the CDC Foundation are grateful to our donors for their generous contributions of funds, expertise and engagement that help CDC save and improve lives in the United States and throughout the world.

The CDC Foundation has just released our fiscal year 2014 Report to Contributors, titled “Why I Give: A Celebration of Our Partners,” which has led me to reflect on the power of public-private partnerships to drive progress in health. The CDC Foundation’s support of CDC’s response to the current Ebola epidemic is one example of how private-sector funding can help fight global health threats. We are humbled by the generosity of our donors who are contributing millions of dollars to help CDC’s response in West Africa, including a $25 million grant, which we just announced, from Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Dr. Priscilla Chan. Yet there are many other examples of how the public and private sectors are coming together to do amazing things.

For example, a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is helping to facilitate CDC’s work with developing countries to train local public health workers and strengthen systems to better detect and respond to dangerous diseases like meningitis and rotavirus—and now Ebola.

Maternal and child health is another area where public-private partnerships are making a difference. Our mHealth Tanzania Partnership—led by the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of Tanzania with support from the CDC Foundation, CDC, and numerous Tanzanian and international public and private sector partners—is leveraging the booming mobile phone infrastructure in Tanzania to reduce maternal and infant mortality. Through the program, text messages and appointment reminders are sent at no charge to pregnant women and mothers of newborns, as well as to their supporters. In addition, programs with Bloomberg Philanthropies are collecting and analyzing data that can be used to inform efforts aimed at improving maternal and child health in Tanzania going forward.

There are myriad examples of how the meaningful engagement of donors is helping to enhance CDC’s efforts at home and abroad, including preventing infections in cancer patients, optimizing safe driving for teens, and developing an injection safety campaign for U.S. healthcare settings. In every case, we’re able to help solve big problems and allow CDC to pursue life-saving work that might not be possible without the support of external partners.

Since 1995, the CDC Foundation has launched 761 programs and raised more than $450 million to advance the life-saving work of CDC. We greatly appreciate our partners and celebrate their deep commitment that inspires us and supports CDC’s work to create a healthier, safer world for us all.

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A Chance to See Through the Eyes of a Girl

By Fredrick Anyanwu

By Fredrick Anyanwu

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport recently began showing an extraordinary collection of art at its T-Concourse Gallery. It’s called “Through the Eyes of a Girl” and features 39 vivid paintings and drawings collected from five countries last year. All of the artists are school-aged girls. Their work depicts their joys, aspirations and daily challenges as they work to pursue their educations. I hope people walking through the airport can spare a few minutes to look at the art.

I was fortunate enough to be part of CARE’s art gathering trip to Ghana’s Ashanti region and got to spend time with several of the girls as they painted and drew. I sat with and looked through the eyes of Jennifer, an 8-year-old orphan who loves math and hopes to be a bank manager when she grows up. Asked to do a self-portrait, she drew pictures of herself doing household chores alongside her cousins and grandmother.

I also saw through the eyes of community leaders who recognized that the high girls’ dropout rates in their communities help keep girls and their families mired in poverty. They worked with CARE on an outreach campaign to show parents that girls can still help around the house if they go to school – and girls who stay in school are less likely to get pregnant and more likely to get a good job as adults. CARE’s program in the area where Jennifer lives cut the girls’ dropout rate by 50 percent.

When people stop to the look at the art, I hope they see they something they find beautiful. And I hope they see what the girls who made the art see; that educating girls in the developing world is an investment that pays long-term economic, health and social dividends to families and communities.

For more information about Through the Eyes of a Girl, visit www.care.org/eyes.

 Fredrick Anyanwu is executive director of individual resource development for CARE. 

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Is There Hope For Haiti?

-Katie Pace, MAP International Public Content Specialist

Katie Pace, MAP International Public Content Specialist

A Tuesday afternoon in January of 2010 the worst natural disaster in the history of the Western Hemisphere changed the course of the Haitian people forever.  It’s been nearly five years since the earthquake shook Haiti and captivated Americans to generously engage in international charitable giving.  Considered to be the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, Haiti is ranked 149th of 182 countries on the Human Development Index.

The earthquake was catastrophic.  It took the lives of an estimated 200,000 people in under a minute and toppled an enormous amount of buildings, including the Presidential Palace and many other government facilities causing mass power outages in the only standing hospitals.  The American people couldn’t help respond as NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) flooded the country with humanitarian aid.  The news media were able to quickly gain entry to Haiti and reported the stench of death as there were more bodies than the Haitian government could ever recover.

With our extensive network of medical partnerships and over 40 years of service to healthcare providers in Haiti, MAP International quickly mobilized for an emergency relief response, as did the majority of humanitarian relief organizations in the U.S.  In the initial onset, tents were set up in critical areas and vital medical care was given to those in the aftermath.

A magnitude 7.0 earthquake would devastate many U.S. cities, so it’s no surprise that buildings in an impoverished nation tumbled and the recovery has been slow.

Some say the NGOs have failed on their mission to rebuild Haiti, but on a recent monitoring trip to Haiti, I would have to disagree.  It’s very true that the overall efforts had good intentions but somewhere along the way took a turn and money was mismanaged and misplaced by a number of organizations and the Haitian government.   The clean water needs weren’t met and a cholera epidemic ensued and infected nearly half a million Haitians.

I write this to remind you that this shouldn’t put a bad taste in our mouths about disaster relief and humanitarian aid during crisis.  Lives were saved.  I think that needs to be said twice, lives were saved.  Haitians that would have gone without healthcare and food were provided antibiotics, fortified foods, surgeries, treatment for cholera, dehydration and other serious conditions. Some of the amazing NGOs that are still on the ground, like our partners Hope for Haiti and Love A Child Haiti, have restored the hope of the Haitian people they serve.  They have built clinics and schools and use MAP’s medicines to stock these clinics and stop disease from spreading and increase the quality of human life.

14953813588_f4e4817916_oThe Haitian people are resilient. I believe that one woman I met in Haiti encompasses the true spirit of the Haitian people.  Her name is Sister Genova, a member of the Mother Teresa’s order, the Missionaries of Charity.  Since 1985, she has lived and worked among the Haitian people – she herself has become Haitian and she spends every day of her life serving the people of Haiti.  Six nuns care for over 300 patients, including malnourished children, disabled children and patients with HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis.  I have never been so amazed at what just six woman can accomplish.  It was heartwarming to watch her walk through the nursery while dozens of children cried because the electricity was out causing their only fan to stop. She was very deliberate to touch every single child as she comforted them without words.  Even though this sweet little woman had nothing, she still wanted to give us fruit from the hospitals garden – she washed it herself while on her knees.  The children were in the hospital above us singing, joyfully.  They may not have the luxuries we have in the United States, access to clean water, proper healthcare and nutrition – but what they do have is hope.  This little nun is the embodiment of Haiti, tenacity and a resilient courage.  I can tell you that there is hope for Haiti.

Please learn more about how MAP provides medicines at www.map.org and learn more about our partners on the ground Hope for Haiti www.hopeforhaiti.com and Love A Child www.loveachild.com.

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Business Pulse: How CDC Protects the Health of Your Business at Home and Abroad

By Charles Stokes, President and CEO, CDC Foundation

By Charles Stokes, President and CEO, CDC Foundation

If you’ve ever had influenza (the flu), you know how debilitating it can be. And there’s more at stake than just your health—when you can’t work there’s a ripple effect on your employer and the economy. In fact, it’s estimated that flu leads to an economic burden of more than $87 billion each year in the United States alone, along with 31.4 million outpatient visits and more than 200,000 hospitalizations.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers a wealth of useful global health guidance and advice for business—from protecting employees who travel abroad to advancing the world’s ability to responds to global health threats. The simple act of encouraging employees to get vaccinated can help protect your business’s productivity, whether your business operates here in Atlanta or in offices around the world.

One way to tap into CDC’s resources for business is through the CDC Foundation’s online Business Pulse series. Last week, the CDC Foundation launched the latest Business Pulse focused on flu prevention. There’s lots of great advice about how to prevent and control flu, including an interactive infographic that offers a quick snapshot of simple actions your business can take to protect your employees. One key takeaway is that flu can be serious for anyone, including those who are otherwise healthy. Further, the single best way to prevent the flu is to get vaccinated annually.

Beyond flu, Business Pulse focuses on a different topic each quarter, including the following:

  • Travelers’ health  highlights how CDC helps protect international business travelers from various health risks, such as infectious diseases, road hazards and environmental concerns.
  • Global health security describes CDC’s role in fighting global health threats, sharing how business leaders can take action to protect their workforces in the United States and abroad.
  • Business continuity provides insights about CDC’s work to help preserve continuity of operations and protect business before a crisis strikes.
  • Safe healthcare shares how CDC protects patients and lowers healthcare costs by addressing the growing problem of healthcare-associated infections and antibiotic resistance.

We’re pleased to offer Business Pulse as a series aimed at increasing awareness about the important public health work CDC does 24/7 to protect the well-being of our nation’s citizens, businesses and economy. Business Pulse conveys relevant information to employers, and, more importantly, provides opportunities for you to take action to protect the health of your employees and your business—at home and abroad.TravelHealth_web

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Toilets and Rape

By Stephanie Ogden, senior water policy advisor for CARE

By Stephanie Ogden, senior water policy advisor for CARE

In May, in the rural village of Katra in India’s Uttar Pradesh state, two teenage girls left their home at night to search for a place to use the toilet. They never came home. The girls were gang-raped, murdered and found the next day hanging from a tree.

As an organization that fights poverty, strives to advance opportunities for women and girls, and works to improve access to water and sanitation, this crime is particularly heartbreaking. No girl, woman, man, or boy should have his or her safety and security threatened by lack of a toilet.

The connection between access to toilets and personal safety is not widely understood in the United States, where most of us have a clean, safe, private place to flush away evidence of our most basic necessities.

But we are in the world’s lucky minority. Nearly 65% of people across the globe lack a safe, private toilet within a few steps of their home. And while rape is one risk that results, there are many more. They include cholera and diarrheal diseases, reduced educational attainment for young girls, stunting and malnutrition among infants, and, of course, the enduring, deep distress caused by being forced to do in public what you want to do in private. A person who is forced to defecate publicly is also forced to put the health of her or his community at risk.

We must not oversimplify. Many complex factors led to the deaths of these girls and millions like them. It’s not simply a lack of toilets putting people at risk of violence. Nevertheless, their deaths make it painfully apparent that access to sanitation is essential to personal and collective well-being. We need both to call attention to this fact and act on it.

In the U.S., the Water for the World Act ensures that we continue to allocate foreign assistance to increasing sustainable access to water and sanitation all over the world. It also ensures we allocate money wisely, monitor the progress of the programs funded, and ensure improvements to water and sanitation are sustainable.

The bill is simple and important, but it is in danger of failing in the House of Representatives when it comes up for a vote as soon as this week. We can stand up in honor of those two girls in Uttar Pradesh, and millions of girls like them, and help ensure that everyone in this world has access to a toilet and peace for at least a few important minutes every day. Let your representatives know that the Water for the World Act is important to you and to us as a nation.

No girl should be at risk of rape or violence in her own community. Ever. And no government should be complacent about rape or violence. Improved access to sanitation and water facilities around the world won’t end violent attacks on women, but they can meaningfully improve both the physical safety of girls and women, as well as the overall health of communities.

Please urge your representative to support the Water for the World Act.

Stephanie Ogden is a senior water policy advisor for CARE. Headquartered in Atlanta, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside poor girls and women because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. To learn more, visit www.care.org.

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Atlanta Joins Together to Fight Ebola As Window Closes

1-Steve Stirling Gray Background

By Steve Stirling, President & CEO of MAP International

This past week Dr. Tom Frieden, Director of the CDC was very clear on his stance towards the Ebola outbreak.

“There is a window of opportunity to tamp this down, but that window is closing. We need action now,” Frieden said.

Act now. That is something that we as the global health community have been working hard to do since the outbreak began in March, but there’s still so much more we must do.

Frieden went on to say “This is not just a problem for West Africa, it’s not just a problem for Africa. It’s a problem for the world, and the world needs to respond.”

Today, the Atlanta community is responding. NGOs, companies, universities and the general public are joining together to help ensure that this deadly virus ceases to exist. As a new member of that community, I couldn’t be more honored to stand alongside them. At MAP, our foundation is partnerships. Since our founding in 1954, we have continued our mission of “serving the servants”. It is a privilege to stand beside some of the world’s leading health organizations based here in Atlanta in providing aid to those afflicted by this rapidly spreading virus. 1-Ebola map-001This week, MAP is partnering with MedShare, whose mission is to provide medical supplies to those in most need. Joining together gives us the ability to respond more effectively in times of crisis and to have the most impact. These three airlifted shipments, one each to Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea will provide the hardest hit countries with four pallets of essential medical supplies and one pallet of vital pharmaceuticals.

MedShare is joined in this endeavor by The Coca-Cola Africa Foundation and UPS to provide those suffering with hope, through health. With the World Health Organization (WHO) predicting that more than 20,000 people could contract Ebola before the outbreak is contained the faculty and staff at Georgia State University’s School of Public Health have stepped up to be a beacon for health and public safety.

Joining with us, they are raising funds to send Personal Protection Suits (PPE’s) to healthcare workers in West Africa. Many of our partners on the ground in Liberia have been forced to close their doors because they have lost too many healthcare workers to this deadly virus. If we continue to work together we can save the lives of those healthcare workers still treating patients in West Africa and prevent the spread of Ebola elsewhere.

So with that in mind, please consider not only donating to MAP’s relief efforts but also to one of our valued partners and sister organizations. Together we can stop this outbreak.

  • MAP International www.map.org
  • MedShare www.medshare.org
  • CARE www.care.org
  • Georgia State University’s School of Public Health https://www.causes.com/stopebola
  • The CDC Foundation http://www.cdcfoundation.org/globaldisaster
  • American Leprosy Missions www.leprosy.org

Steve Stirling is the President & CEO of MAP International, a global Christian health organization based in Georgia that partners with people living in conditions of poverty to save lives and develop healthier families and communities. To learn more about MAP www.map.org.

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