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Congolese and the World Health Organization officials wear protective suits as they prepare equipment before the launch of vaccination campaign against the deadly Ebola virus near Mangina village, near the town of Beni in North Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of Congo. VOA

By Lisa Schlein

The World Health Organization is urgently appealing for $40 million to salvage its operation to bring the Ebola epidemic to an end in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. This is the latest health news.


The Ebola operation in eastern DR Congo’s conflict-ridden North Kivu and Ituri provinces is on financial life-support. The World Health Organization reports its coffers will be empty at the end of this month. It is urging donors to step up immediately and contribute the money needed to tackle this virulent disease.

WHO spokesman Tarik Jasarevic says failure to support this operation would be tragic as good progress is being made in containing the Ebola virus. Over the past two months, he says between three and 15 cases of Ebola have been reported each week. This is compared to 120 reported cases of Ebola in April 2019.


A person dressed in Ebola protective apparel is seen inside an Ebola care facility at the Bwera general hospital near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo in Bwera, Uganda. VOA

“Last week there was only one case reported and we are down to only two health zones in eastern DRC where we have Ebola cases. But again, if we do not receive this funding, we risk obviously to have more spread of the virus. So, therefore, there is this appeal to get more funding,” he said.

WHO reports 3433 cases of Ebola, including 2253 deaths, for an overall case fatality rate of 66 percent. Jasarevic says money from the $40 million appeal also will be used for preparedness activities in neighboring countries.

He notes a modest WHO investment of $18 million in helping Uganda set up screening, monitoring and other systems succeeded in stopping Ebola from taking root in that country last year. He tells VOA it is crucial that the Ebola operation not be interrupted because as long as there is one case of the disease, there will be a risk of further spread.

“So, we have to really get down to zero. We are making progress, but again, whether you have one case, or you have more cases, the activities that you have to put in place are the same. So, we need to make sure that activities are funded,” said Jasarevic.

Also Read- Higher Intake of Fruits and Dairy Products Reduces Risk of Stroke: Study

There have been eight confirmed cases of Ebola reported from Beni and Mabalako in North Kivu Province in the past 21 days. But WHO reports there have been no new cases reported for more than 42 days from Butembo and Mambasa Health Zones. WHO calls the reduction of geographic spread of the Ebola virus and the declining number of cases encouraging. (VOA)


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The aim of the book is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

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The author who named the book after her twin sons -- Puhor and Niyor -- is a parent who has seen and heard the tales of ridicule and discrimination suffered by many in India and beyond. She says the book is an artistic illustration for kids that details how different families can live and coexist. Whether it's children with two dads or two moms, children with a single dad or single mom, and even multiracial family units, Borthakur's book teaches love, understanding, and compassion towards unconventional families.

Beyond race, gender, color, and ethnicity which have formed the bases for discrimination since the beginning of time, this book aims to bring to light a largely ignored issue. For so long, single parents have been treated like a taboo without any attempt to understand their situations; no one really cares how or why one's marriage ended but just wants to treat single parents as villains simply for choosing happiness and loving their children.

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