Mahatma Cultural Center Rescues Ebola Orphans

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A subsidiary of the Indian community, Mahatma Cultural Center, (MCC), has made tuition payments for 23 Ebola orphans in the Power of God Academy in Caldwell, outside Monrovia.

The payment is in response to a call by government and international humanitarian organizations for philanthropists to come in with assistance for Liberian survivors and orphans.

Philip Jijo president of the Mahatma in his statement during a brief ceremony marking the payment yesterday said their support is to help the beneficiaries take responsibility of their future and country.

According to him, they will keep on assisting the needy in communities in Liberia as their social responsibility requires.

Jijo said his group went out to the MSF ETU where it found those 23 children and decided to help because they were in desperate need.

He urged the orphans to be good students to represent themselves and their country in the future.

The care taker of the orphans, Elizabeth Moses thanked the Indians for their intervention, adding, “It is so challenging to contend with these children who lost their parents.”

She said, “When I brought them in this clinic after the deaths of their parents, I used US$600 out of my salary from MSF to appeal to the school administrator to keep them in school.

“It was within that process that this group came and said they were going to pay their tuition fees.  We have also received support from Mrs. Mary Broh, director general of the GSA.”

She also disclosed that the Chinese has decided to build 4-bedroom to accommodate the children to make the children’s environment more conducive.

In addition to the challenges, Ms Moses said stigma is a factor that is also posing psychosocial pains on the orphans.

“People in the neighborhood do not accept the children for fear of contracting the disease.  Even some relatives who are connected to them fear to come around them, and as they (orphans) go in any house to witness television or play, they are rejected.  This then puts me under pressure to seek television and other musical sets to amuse them,” she emphasized.

Indians are one group of foreign nationals with long standing history in Liberia.  They are mainly engaged in both merchandised and small retail businesses.

They have also entered the mining sector with steel giant Arcelor Mittal in Tokadi, Nimba County. India has also donated several public transport buses to the Liberian government.

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