WASHINGTON, Aug. 21, 2014 /PRNewswire-iReach/ — GlobalGiving, a US-based nonprofit, has launched an Ebola Epidemic Relief Fund to enable individual donors, foundations, and companies to donate to locally-driven Ebola relief efforts in West Africa. As international aid workers continue to leave the affected countries for their own safety, these local organizations will play a critical role in containing the outbreak. The Fund supports projects from nearly a dozen nonprofits that have been thoroughly vetted by GlobalGiving.
Citizens in Sierra Leone participate in an Ebola Awareness campaign with GlobalGiving partner Develop Africa (PRNewsFoto/GlobalGiving)
So far more than 1,500 individual donors have given more than $260,000 to Ebola projects on the GlobalGiving website. On August 14, 2014, the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation provided $100,000 in matching funds to encourage individual donors to take action against Ebola. The $100,000 was matched with donations from 739 donors in fewer than four days.
One of the projects receiving funding is a free outpatient hospital in Lakka, Sierra Leone. The hospital is in need of protective clothing for hospital staff and more supplies for the Ebola isolation tents that have been set up on the property.
Another recipient is a community-based organization called West Point Women for Health and Development, made up of resident community healthcare workers from the largest slum in Monrovia, Liberia. The West Point slum was highlighted in the news this past week when community members raided an Ebola isolation clinic. These actions make it clear that there is a need for locally-led education and sensitization around the epidemic. The West Point Women are well positioned to engage in culturally-relevant training around Ebola awareness and prevention. Donations will provide educational materials, personal protective equipment, and stipends to support these women who are the key to preventing a devastating outbreak in the overcrowded slum.
“After Thursday’s announcement from the World Health Organization that the number of Ebola cases has been vastly underestimated in West Africa, it’s clear that there’s still much to be done to stop the outbreak,” said Britt Lake, GlobalGiving’s Director of Programs. “We’re grateful for this support from the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation and the hundreds of individual donors who have given to these much-needed efforts to stem the crisis in West Africa.”
In addition to the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, corporate partners such as the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation have supported Ebola relief. Lilly is matching their employee contributions, providing more than $14,000 so far. GlobalGiving invites other companies and institutional donors to email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about working together to support local organizations fighting Ebola.
GlobalGiving is the first and largest global crowdfunding community for nonprofits. Since 2002, GlobalGiving has helped raise more than $140 million from more than 380,000 donors for more than 10,000 projects. Because GlobalGiving works with nonprofit organizations in more than 150 countries, when disasters like the Ebola outbreak occur, GlobalGiving can quickly deliver funds to locally-driven organizations that are best-suited to provide relief in their own communities.