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Ebola in the Congo - donate & help now

Ebola threatens girls and boys in the Congo

Ebola is a cruel and relentless viral disease. According to the WHO (World Health Organization), those who become infected have a chance of survival at around 50 percent. Both young and old die of the highly infectious disease. But Ebola hits children particularly hard: They are most at risk of dying from the Ebola virus. In addition, many girls and boys even have to deal with the death of their mother or father if they too have contracted Ebola.

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Many people in the Congo have died of Ebola. Some children lose several family members as a result of Ebola. It is all the worse that Ebola outbreaks occur again and again in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

UNICEF works directly on site for the children affected - with clean water, with education and with a lot of care and psychosocial help.

The children in the Congo need a lot of attention during the Ebola outbreaks.

© UNICEF / UNI312451 / Brown

Our helpers do everything in their power to support the children affected by Ebola and their families. Whenever there is an outbreak, we need to be able to react very quickly. For our work in the Congo we still need donations!

Your donation will help against Ebola in the Congo

Ebola protection package for a family
20,000 water cleaning tablets
Hand pump for clean drinking water

A third of Ebola sufferers in the Congo are children

After a long break, the highly dangerous infectious disease Ebola broke out again in the Congo in August 2018. Since then, the Ebola epidemic has resulted in more than 3,600 confirmed cases. Over 2,300 people died from the virus (As of November 18, 2020).

The first promising vaccines against Ebola are now in use. But the virus disease is still life-threatening and can spread very quickly. Ebola is highly contagious and is transmitted through body fluids. Those who become infected with Ebola get a high fever, diarrhea, muscle pain and bleeding. The chances of survival are poor and the majority of those infected die from Ebola. It is crucial to start treatment by doctors as soon as possible: the earlier it starts, the greater the chance of surviving Ebola.

"The day I left the Ebola treatment center, I danced for joy."

- David, age 7, Ebola survivor from the Congo

For children, the risk is even greater than for the rest of the population: The risk of dying from Ebola is even higher for them than for adults. Malnourished girls and boys and children under five are particularly at risk.

The deadly Ebola virus broke out in the province of Equateur in 2020.

© UNICEF / UNI340387 / Desjardins

Our Ebola emergency aid in the Congo

With every Ebola outbreak in the vast country, our primary goal is to contain the epidemic as quickly as possible in order to protect as many children as possible from the deadly virus. We contribute to the fight against Ebola with a wide variety of measures.

Ebola survivors are immune to the disease and care for affected young children.

© UNICEF / UN0264158 / Hubbard

Education: Hygiene helps against the deadly Ebola virus

Good education, especially on the subject of hygiene, plays a decisive role in the fight against Ebola. For children, therefore, not only arithmetic, writing or reading are on the timetable, but also hand washing. The seven-year-old Kambale, for example, says: "Today I learned that we should wash our hands - and that we could die of Ebola if we don't."

Schoolchildren learn that they absolutely have to follow hygiene rules in order to protect themselves - especially thorough hand washing.

© UNICEF / UN0235949 / Nybo

In the Congo, large parts of the population still do not know how dangerous Ebola is and how they can protect themselves. Our helpers therefore provide information about hygiene and also about the disease itself - by home visit, leaflet, megaphone or via the media. We have already reached millions of Congolese people.

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Twice a day, a helper trained by UNICEF walks through the town with her megaphone and explains the hygiene measures that can be taken to protect against Ebola.

© UNICEF / UNI340853 /
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Proper hand washing prevents the transmission of diseases like Ebola. These kids now know how to do it.

© UNICEF / UN0229503 / Mark Naftalin
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"Wash between your fingers too!" UNICEF employee Jean Marie Bofio makes sure that the children do everything right.

© UNICEF / UN0229504 / Mark Naftalin
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Information is everything: The children not only learn how to wash their hands properly from UNICEF employees, but also what Ebola actually is.

© UNICEF / UN0229509 / Mark Naftalin
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High fever is one of the symptoms of Ebola. UNICEF employees therefore measure the children's body temperature. This boy is healthy.

© UNICEF / UN0229506 / Mark Naftalin
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We also involve the local health centers in the fight against the Ebola epidemic. We supply the stations with vaccines and educational material, for example.

© UNICEF / UNI340366 / Desjardins
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Julie (in blue protective clothing) suffered from Ebola herself and survived the disease. Now she works in an Ebola treatment center and takes care of infected people.

© UNICEF / UN0367792 / Tremeau

UNICEF relief supplies to the Congo

In addition, UNICEF provides important relief supplies - for example Soap, bucket and chlorine tabletswith which water can be treated to make drinking water. We also supply tanks with drinking water, which we use to supply schools and health care facilities.

Together with our partners, we have hundreds of schools Hand washing stations Installed. We trained several thousand teachers on the subject of Ebola. Now they are passing on all the important information about the virus and the disease to their students.

UNICEF delivers medical and other relief supplies to the Congo, such as protective suits.

© UNICEF / UN0209048 / Naftalin

We even bring it about protective clothing to the affected regions in the Congo. This includes medical gloves and breathing masks. The doctors and health workers also urgently needClinical thermometer. They are especially important because an elevated body temperature can be an early sign of Ebola.

Psychosocial help for children in the Congo

We also support the children psychologically. Some children in the Congo have lost both parents to Ebola or have been separated from them. UNICEF has trained psychologists to look after these children. The children can talk to them and share their worries with them.

A helper takes care of a baby whose mother has died of Ebola with great devotion.

© UNICEF / UN0311514 / Tremeau

Ebola survivors play a special role in accompanying the children: After surviving the illness, they are immune themselves. You can take care of sick children without becoming infected. In some Ebola treatment centers, they are by the children's side day and night. They are especially important emotionally for the children.

Donations for Ebola victims in the Congo

TheThe risk of Ebola in the Congo seems to have been averted for the time being. But we remain vigilant and will continue to do everything we can to strengthen the health system in the Congo. Our vision for the Congo: to stop the Ebola virus permanently.

Permanently prevent Ebola in the Congo with your donation

Let us work together to ensure that the girls and boys in the Congo can grow up healthy. Help us in the fight against Ebola.

More information about Ebola in the Congo

Ebola epidemics in the Congo

There have been eleven Ebola outbreaks in the huge country since 1976. The last were not long ago: it took almost two years before the outbreak in the east of the country was declared officially defeated in June 2020. Another outbreak in the northwest of the huge country (in the Equateur province) has been considered over since mid-November 2020. These are great successes that give us hope for the future.

Ebola virus: danger to neighboring countries

If there are acute Ebola cases in a country, there is a high risk for neighboring countries that the virus will cross national borders and an Ebola outbreak will occur there as well. In Uganda, for example, the neighboring country of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, there were also isolated cases in 2019. For this reason, special protective measures are being introduced in the border regions of the Democratic Republic, for example health checks at the borders and increased awareness-raising work.

Congo: hunger, war and violence

Ebola is a serious, but by no means the only danger for children in the Democratic Republic of the Congo: They have been suffering from hunger, war and violence for years. There are also other dangerous diseases such as cholera and, most recently, measles. Last year are several thousand people died of measles in the Congo. And of course the Congo is in the middle of the global oneCorona pandemic - with increasing numbers of infections.

Helping children fight Ebola

The children in the Congo urgently need our support! Thank you for your donation. It helps to reliably protect children and families in the Congo.