Sierra Leone News: Soroptimist provides educational support to ebola orphans

Members of Soroptimist, Mr. Coomber posed with the beneficiaries

Members of Soroptimist, Mr. Coomber posed with the beneficiaries

As a way of fulfilling one of their objectives, which is providing learning opportunities to pupils and student, Soroptimist International Club of Freetown (SIF) has over a year been supporting orphaned children of medical workers who lost their lives in the fight against ebola in Sierra Leone.
Together with their visitors, Margret Emsley; President Soroptimist International Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) and Alison Reid from SI Northwich , the Club who is partnering with the Foundation for Children of Ebola-affected Medical workers (FOCEM), visited the orphans in Bo to supervise and reassure them of their continued support.
Speaking at the programme on the 24th September 2016, at One World Link Complex, Mattru Road, Bo, the President of SIF, Mrs.Natalie Cole pledged the club’s continued support to the orphans adding that they will only withdraw their support to a pupil who is not taking his/her school work seriously.
She explained to the pupils that Soroptimist is a worldwide service organization for women, whose objectives are to act as a global voice for women and girls through awareness, advocacy and action. Mrs. Cole encouraged the pupils to be serious with their education stating that is the only benefit the Club is ready and prepared to live with them.
The President SIF sympathized with the orphans and prayed that God himself will continue to console them.
Margret Emsley while sympathising with the beneficiaries said this is the first time she is coming to Africa in particular Sierra Leone adding that she is very impressed with the work the SIF is doing.
She encouraged the beneficiaries to be steadfast in their education as they have nothing to worry about with regards school fees and school items.
Speaking on the activities of FOCEM, National Programme Administrator Andrew S. Coomber said FOCEM is a non-political and non-religious group that is operating in different district including Bombali, Western Area, Kenema, Kailahun among others explaining that as their contribution to ease stress on some guardians that are taking care of children whose parents died during the ebola, they are specifically focusing on meeting the educational needs of the children left behind by ebola related deceased health care workers.
He thanked soroptimist for their support to the children stating that the only way they can reward the health workers who died as a result of ebola, is by taking care of their children so that even as they Rest In Peace, they will know that their children are safe.
He called on the Club to continue their good will and spread their support to other areas stating that there are other children waiting for similar support.
Giving his ordeal, one of the affected orphans from Bo School, Thomas Kamara in tears said he was from school in 2014 when he noticed that his mother was sick.
“My mother was having frequent stool and at the same time vomiting. She was advised to visit the hospital and on her arrival she was tested and the result was positive. My mother who was also pregnant was taken to the ebola centre. After some days, she was told that her baby is dead in her stomach and they have to remove it. After they had removed the baby my mother was weak and later passed away”, he cried bitterly.
Everybody in the hall was sobbing as Thomas Kamara ended up by thanking soroptimist for their support towards them.
By Emmanuella Kallon
Wednesday September 28, 2016 Awako

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