Emergency in Kibera: Help Us Stop the Cholera Outbreak! May 15, 2015 by Carolina For Kibera
Currently, there is a severe outbreak of cholera in Kibera, with more and more cases surfacing throughout the community. There have been dozens of confirmed cases, with 5 resulting in death—and the number keeps climbing. Without intervention, it will only get worse.
Carolina for Kibera is working hard to treat patients who have contracted cholera and continue educating the community on good hygiene practices. But we can’t do it alone! Your support is crucial to helping us stop this outbreak. Donate today.
What is cholera?
Cholera is a water-borne, diarrheal disease that is extremely virulent and can be fatal if left untreated. While not contagious, improper environmental sanitation, such as the open sewers and poor drinking water found in Kibera, can lead to contamination of food and water on a large scale. Currently, Kenya is in its rainy season, which only makes it worse. There is no way to tell if food or water is contaminated. As a result, the government has banned eating raw food and closed businesses selling food and water in Kibera.
How is CFK helping?
The good news is that the majority of cholera cases are treatable—if they are caught early enough. Up to 80% of people can be treated successfully through oral rehydration salts (info via the World Health Organization). Carolina for Kibera is working hard to provide care for the influx of cholera cases at 2 different treatment centers, one of which has been set up in our clinic. The Kenyan government relies on local partners to help respond to outbreaks like this one; therefore, CFK’s services are vital for the community. For prevention, Community Health Volunteers are reaching out to members of the community with important hygiene and sanitation tips, especially regarding hand-washing and water purification.
How can I help?
Cholera control programs are expensive because efforts to stop an outbreak take place over several months. As such, your support through this outbreak can make a huge difference. Your donation will go to procuring vital materials, including:
- stand-alone hand-washing facilities
- water treatment kits
- oral rehydration salts to treat patients who have contracted the disease
- education and communication materials
Providing these supplies will reduce the number of cases of cholera, ensure we are prepared if the situation worsens, and prevent future outbreaks.