Give hope, encouragement and emotional support, show solidarity and respect – #StandingSideBySide
News reports on Ebola cases from all around the world are amounting. The deadly Ebola-Virus decease (EVD) is no longer just a West-African issue – the Ebola outbreak concerns us all.
The first deaths in Europe and the US have brought the fear closer to home, of course. And the feeling of being helpless as well as asking ourselves what we can do for all the parties involved, for the people in Ebola-affected areas, for local and international help-provider, for the infected and their families and friends.
Even in these difficult conditions our SOS colleagues in West Africa are keeping us updated, daily via e-mail, SMS or telephone, about the developments, the prevailing tension, the people’s stories and their work on site. Realizing how little we were able to do currently in comparison to them, moved us very much and so we tried to find a way to give those, who are risking their lives fighting Ebola at least emotional support to show our admiration for their courage and endurance.
Our initiative #StandingSidebySide is trying to help all those who have to cope with the Ebola outbreak, be it actively or passively, and to give them the respect they deserve and to offer them emotional support and encouragement.
Why have we started this initiative?
Simply put, to show those, who have to live in fear, isolation, disease and grief, that they are not alone – #StandingSidebySide is expressing our sympathy, respect, support and hope for those people.
When we, as people are experiencing hardship, we need someone who believes in us like our friends, family, and neighbours. Knowing we have someone by our side is incredibly empowering.
This is especially true for people in the affected regions, who have been trapped in isolation weeks and months now and have been living in their country, region, and houses in fear and with caution hoping that aid will come.
How does #StadingSidebySide work?
With the help of social networking sites and by making a clear statement with a picture, it’s possible! We need your support for this though, write down your #StandingSidebySide message and take a picture of yourself with or without your own picture. Post your #StandingSidebySide message on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and invite others to take part.
Fighting Ebola with hope – send us your #StandingSidebySide statement! Every #StandingSidebySide statement is a glimmer of hope for all of those fighting the Ebola-Virus decease (EVD)!
Here are the first e-mails by our SOS-colleagues on site.
- “Dear HGFD (Hermann-Gmeiner-Fonds Deutschland, SOS-Kinderdörfer weltweit), Dear #StandingSideBySide Team… THANK YOU!!!”
- “We at the SOS- Medical Center are so grateful for your continuous support and concern. Fighting to stay safe!”
- “On behalf of the SOS-Family in Liberia please accept our sincere thanks and appreciation to this unprecedented support and commitment to the programs and to the SOS family in Liberia.”
- “Thanks and appreciation to the team at HGFD (Hermann-Gmeiner-Fonds Deutschland, SOS-Kinderdörfer weltweit) for the clear message. We (SOS-Team in Sierra Leone) appreciate your words of courage & inspiration. Our biggest thanks to all SOS friends and supporters!!! Thank you!!! (TENKE; KOSHE!!!)”
- “On behalf of SOS Children’s Villages Guinea a great THANKS for being here with us. All this attention and commitment from HGFD (Hermann-Gmeiner-Fonds Deutschland, SOS-Kinderdörfer weltweit) go straight to our heart etc…”
Is #StandingSidebySide the only initiative by the SOS Children’s Villages?
OF COURSE NOT! The SOS Children’s Villages immediately are taking precautions in order to create space for inclusion of children who have lost their parents to the horrifying Ebola epidemic and are therefore being treated as if they were lepers. The fear of coming to close to them is unfortunately not uncommon. Many are even afraid to come into contact with the relatives of those who’ve died from the disease. This means many children are all alone and are suffering because of it.
The SOS Children’s Villages will take in as many of them as possible and will also take care of these orphans (#EbolaWaisen) in the future just as they do with all the other SOS-Children.
Post your #StandingSideBySide messages on all social networks – each new picture and each new statement, be it on a sign, a board, on paper or on a screen, gives hope to all of those who are fighting against the Ebola virus in West Africa and around the world.
Be part of it! Take pictures! Write Us! Post! Share! Let’s us all show our solidarity side by side.