Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Devex - Criticism over Ebola response 'far from reality' — WHO official

"More than a year has passed since the first human contracted the deadly Ebola virus that led to an unprecedented outbreak in West Africa. So-called patient zero, a two-year-old in the remote Guinean village of Meliandou, became ill on Dec. 26, 2013, and died two days later.

The World Health Organization, however, did not publish any official notification of Ebola on its website until March 25 of this year.

Since then, WHO, global aid organisations and governments from around the world have battled to halt the disease. As the start of 2015 draws nearer, the epidemic is still raging and has now topped 19,340 reported cases resulting in 7,518 deaths, according to the latest figures released Monday by the U.N. health agency.

Devex caught up with Dr. Maria Neira, director of WHO’s Public Health and Environment Department, which focuses on preventative measures and the root causes of diseases, to know more about how the Ebola epidemic has affected her work, as well as what lessons she has learned so far from the response to the outbreak, and how it might change future WHO operations as a result..."

Read the full article on Devex.com

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Devex - Gordon Brown’s future global development plans

"Former U.K. Prime Minister Gordon Brown plans to increase his focus on global development after stepping down as a member of the parliament at the next election, according to aides who supported him during his term in office.

Brown’s resignation after the U.K. general election in May 2015, will end a 31-year career in national politics. However, in recent years the former leader of the Labour Party has increased his development profile, especially on issues affecting children. Shortly after being appointed U.N. Special Envoy for Global Education in 2012, with his wife Sarah Brown he co-founded the international charity Theirworld, which campaigns for universal access to education and encourages business leaders to accelerate progress toward achieving this goal.

Alison McGovern MP, who worked for Brown as his parliamentary private secretary from 2010 until his resignation and is now a shadow minister for education, told Devex there was “no sense in which Gordon is retiring at all..."

Read the full article on Devex.com

Friday, 5 December 2014

TES - Life and learning under the shadow of the Ebola virus

"In September, teacher Foray Turay should have welcomed 300 children to his primary school in the Sierra Leonean village of Samaya. But not a single child in the country has attended lessons since 31 July, when the government declared a state of national emergency to contain the deadly Ebola virus.

Across the three worst-affected West African countries of Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea, 5 million children aged between 3 and 17 are currently out of education. With more than 16,000 reported Ebola cases and in excess of 6,900 deaths, it is safer for children to stay at home than sit on crowded school benches where physical contact – the way the virus spreads – is unavoidable.

But with the outbreak still far from being under control, educationalists are concerned that pupils will miss an entire academic year, or never return to their studies..."

Read the full article on TES online