Crucial funding and supplies from Ireland to help tackle Ebola – Breen

September 22nd, 2014 - Pat Breen

Fine Gael Clare TD and Chairman of the Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade, Pat Breen, has welcomed the announcement of €600,000 in funding and a major dispatch of emergency supplies to tackle Ebola in West Africa

“I strongly welcome the announcement that €600,000 has been allocated to West Africa to tackle the spread of Ebola. In addition to these funds, the Irish Government is also organising a major dispatch of emergency supplies to the region which has been devastated by this deadly disease. The funding will be allocated to the region through UNICEF. The dispatch comprises 42 tonnes of emergency supplies, including blankets, tents, mosquito nets and water tanks which will be airlifted from the UN Humanitarian Response Depot in Ghana and distributed by the World Food Programme, Goal, and Concern in Sierra Leone.

“As chair of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade, the rate at which Ebola has spread throughout West Africa is of great concern to me. On Wednesday of this week I will chair a meeting of that committee at which Deputies and Senators will receive briefings from GOAL and Médecins Sans Frontières on the matter. I look forward to hearing their update about the situation on the ground in West Africa.

“The Irish people are rightly proud of our aid programme, Irish Aid, which works in the poorest countries of the world. We are assisting with this crisis in many ways, including contributing human resources; the Department of Health has deployed two public health specialists to work with the World Health Organisation and I encourage Irish doctors and nurses to volunteer their expertise to help in the fight against Ebola. In addition, a member of Ireland’s Rapid Response Corps was deployed last weekend to Senega, to work with the World Food Programme to set up an air transit centre for use by the UN Humanitarian Air Service.

“Sierra Leone is one of Irish Aid’s 9 key partner countries and has been one of the worst affected countries throughout this rapid spread of Ebola. Irish Aid also supports development work in Liberia, another country which has been very badly affected. Ireland has already provided funding of €350,000 to organisations working on the Ebola response in Sierra Leone and Liberia and this additional funding and provision of emergency supplies is crucial in helping to tackle this deadly disease and to help vulnerable people emerge from this crisis.”