THE FIGHT against Ebola has been taken up by a Leamington charity – and it needs help to spread the word.
Thare Machi Education (TME) – which produces health education DVDs to help people in developing countries – has produced a specialist disc in a bid to halt the spread of the deadly virus which has already claimed more than 5,000 lives in West Africa.
The Althorpe Street-based charity has been busy over the past two months preparing the Ebola disc, which is supplied completely free of charge.
But the problem now facing TME is actually getting it to the countries where it is so vitally needed.
TME Chief Operating Officer Rachel Butt said: “Royal Mail are still not accepting post to Sierra Leone and Liberia so if you have contacts in the UK who could carry DVDs out please let us know. We are investigating using other carriers in order to get DVDs to affected areas as quickly as possible.
“We would really like to hear from anyone who is travelling to the countries, and would like to take some DVDS, or anyone who would like to fund distribution.”
TME has already received help from the Lunchboxgift project, a UK charity born out of the Ebola epidemic, which provides freshly cooked meals for patients and staff at treatment centres based in affected countries. It will be distributing 250 of the DVDs in goody bags to health workers on the frontline.
The DVD called Avoiding Ebola teaches how the virus is transmitted and how people can protect themselves and others from catching it, together with the importance of good hygiene, and also about the incubation period of the virus.
It also aims to counter the myths and rumours about Ebola by showing people how to look after a sufferer as safely as possible, especially those unable to get to a treatment centre.
The DVD is currently available in English and French and the charity is also working of a Krio translation – the most widely spoken language in Sierra Leone – and other languages.
While the DVD lesson can also be downloaded – http://lessons.tme.org.uk/product/avoiding-ebola-english/ – the internet coverage is often poor, and sometimes non-existent, in areas where needed. The DVD can be played ion portable players which can be charged in a car.
TME thanked all those who had helped in the production of the DVD, including comedian and TME supporter Hal Cruttenden who narrated it.
Visit www.tme.org.uk or call 01926 422711 for further information.