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  • Mayila Yansaneh

A New Voice 4 the Ebola Generation - our Older Generations

The boys they said they would post this Sunday. I said even if I post this to you now you won’t get it in time! But they meant post it on here, this social media thing. They explain it’s like a modern newspaper column. My generation is not used to this social media but newspapers, those we understand, so here is my first column in a long time.

Remembering the past

This weekend along with Sierra Leone, I, too, have been remembering the past. The close relatives and the many friends Ebola took and it made me think back to when news broke of the first cases of Ebola. My son called me with the news and explained how easy this Ebola spreads. My friend mama Hanneke (Hanneke Hoogendoorn, co-founder) was with me taking coffee and we knew straightaway….

We knew there will be a terrible human cost and many children will be left behind. There always are. From War, from famine, from stigmatising HIV and now, now from this wicked, wicked Ebola.

Those of us old enough to have witnessed these things first hand; to be fortunate enough have survived these things, we must not stand by this time. This generation of Ebola’s children must not be abandoned.

What could we do?

My friend mama Haneke we talk and talk about it. We knew we must do something for the children and so we made our Foundation to give a voice to these Ebola’s children and to give whatever help we can to as many as we can. One child at a time. We know now Ebola left 12,000 orphans and we are especially concerned for those more than 3,000 children, who so cruelly lost both parents to this deadly Ebola.

These blameless children – they now have no parents to protect them. No parents to guide them or love them. I have witnessed with my own eyes many of Ebola’s children now living on the streets with the dangers of malnutrition, assault and even rape.

Mama Hanneke and I, we believe that now these children have lost everything, let them, at least have something - protection, health and some good schooling. Let them now be our children, the world’s children and receive our protection, our guidance. Above all let them receive our love, the world’s love.

Honour the child

We surely owe these blameless children a debt. They do not deserve to be disregarded. Swept under the carpet. Abandoned. Let us instead guide them.

I think on an old west African proverb “Honour the child and he will surely honour you”. If we honour these children then, perhaps together, we can repay the debt and guide them be co-operative, civic-minded citizens; anti-corruption and entrepreneurial – a backbone for Sierra Leone’s renaissance.

Togetehr, we can empower a new generation of teachers, nurses, police and civil servants. An entrepreneurial generation of business and community leaders.

So I say to you, why not this generation? Ebola’s generation.

Get on board – join our campaign!

Follow our journey from the beginning and help us empower Ebola’s 12,000 children. Ebola’s Generation.

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