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31 Dec 2012 description
report IRIN

DAKAR, 31 December 2012 (IRIN) - The cholera epidemic that struck Guinea and Sierra Leone in 2012 is winding down. What to do now? Start preparing - for cholera.

That's part of the message from donors, aid workers and health officials after the most serious cholera outbreak in years that infected some 30,000 people and killed 400 others in the two countries - mostly in Sierra Leone. They say there should be better preparations for cholera, based on lessons learned and on a strategy in Guinea that was put to the test in 2012.

30 Dec 2012 description

The Joint Assessment Mission (JAM) conducted in September 2012 aimed at obtaining a better understanding of the situation, needs, risks, capacities and vulnerabilities of refugees in Malawi with regard to food, livelihood, their nutritional/health situation and related matters. The current programme is coming to an end, and this JAM Report aims to provide information for further assistance through the design of a new programme cycle for both WFP (the PRRO) and UNHCR. The last JAM was carried out in 2009 in coordination with the GoM and other stakeholders.

24 Dec 2012 description


Overview of the major reported outbreaks in the WHO African Region

  • Cholera

Ongoing outbreaks

  • Cholera in Sierra Leone
  • Cholera in DR Congo
  • Ebola in Uganda
  • Marburg in Uganda
  • Rift Valley Fever in Mauritania

Ended Outbreaks

  • Ebola in DR Congo
22 Dec 2012 description
report UNAIDS

The First Lady of Sierra Leone, Madam Sia Nyama Koroma has launched a national campaign to prevent new HIV infections among children called “Bon Pikin Wae Nor Get HIV” (Give Birth to Life without HIV).

19 Dec 2012 description
report UN General Assembly


Sixty-seventh General Assembly
59th Meeting (AM)

In other Action, adds South Sudan to Least Developed Countries List, Reaffirms Support for Kimberley Process, Welcomes Cooperation with la Francophonie

18 Dec 2012 description
report IRIN

DAKAR, 18 December 2012 (IRIN) - The cholera that struck more than 7,000 people in Guinea this year was caused by a new generation of cholera strains - atypical variants of vibrio cholerae O1 El Tor, epidemiologists have confirmed.

The new strains secrete a toxin severer than usual strains, creating a more virulent illness - with harsher symptoms and a higher infection rate, according to cholera experts in the region.

17 Dec 2012 description
report IRIN

FREETOWN, 17 December 2012 (IRIN) - Campaigns to lower the rate of female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) in Sierra Leone are having some impact, but efforts to ban the practice have failed thus far, and despite a push to communicate its health risks, many still believe FGM/C promotes good health and hygiene.

A bill outlawing FGM/C was withdrawn at the last minute in June 2007 - and has not been reintroduced.

15 Dec 2012 description
report UN General Assembly


Sixty-seventh General Assembly
Fifth Committee
19th Meeting (AM)

Also Takes Up Reports on: Department of Safety and Security; Review of Use of Private Security Companies by United Nations

In scrutinizing the Secretary-General’s proposed budget for 33 special political missions for 2013, delegates in the Fifth Committee (Administrative and Budgetary) today expressed concern over the unabated growth in financing those missions and the present arrangements for doing so.

13 Dec 2012 description

WFP’s response to the food crisis in the Sahel

Drought in the Sahel region of West Africa brought hunger to millions for the third time in seven years.
The harvest has started in most areas and crop prospects are overall favorable. Neverthe-less, communities remain weakened after months of hardship during a lean season that was longer and more difficult than usual.

During the lean season when needs were greatest, WFP supported between five and six mil-lion people each month through nutrition and food security activities.

13 Dec 2012 description

Vienna, Austria, December 12, 2012. The Governing Board of the OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID), meeting in its 141st Session, has approved 22 loans and grants totaling nearly US$300 million to boost socio-economic development in 23 partner countries. The bulk of the public sector loans will co-finance projects aimed at enhancing the transportation and energy sectors of the recipient countries, as well as the agriculture, education and health sectors.

13 Dec 2012 description
report Save the Children

No child should be denied their right to immunisation – but millions still are

One child in five misses out on basic vaccinations.

Immunisation for All identifies country-level strategies to reach the unreached. And it identifies factors at the global level that will help to create a more conducive environment for countries to achieve and sustain universal immunisation coverage.

10 Dec 2012 description
report European Union

Today, on 10 December, we celebrate Human Rights Day. Standing up for Human Rights, democracy and the rule of law is the silver thread that runs through EU external relations.

10 Dec 2012 description

This summary note is an excerpt from the chapter on Sierra Leone that will appear in the peer-reviewed IFPRI monograph, West African Agriculture and Climate Change: A Comprehensive Analysis.

The research, produced in collaboration with scientists from the countries studied, is based on scenarios from economic global climate change models, and takes into account estimates of each country’s economic and population growth. Each study includes a set of policy recommendations.

06 Dec 2012 description
report IRIN

KOIDU, 6 December 2012 (IRIN) - Sierra Leone’s diamonds fuelled the 1991-2002 civil war, and are now boosting economic growth, but at the same time they are keeping thousands of children out of school.

At a mine resembling a lunar landscape outside Koidu town in Kono Region - the diamond mining heartland in northeastern Sierra Leone - thousands of young men dig and shovel gravel in search of the precious stone.

06 Dec 2012 description
report IRIN

FREETOWN, 6 December 2012 (IRIN) - Fishing communities in Sierra Leone have been hit hard by illegal and unregulated fishing off the West African coast. Unsustainable local fishing practices and the activities of foreign trawlers engaged in so-called “pirate fishing” have led to a significant decline in fish stocks in Sierra Leone, environmental groups and local officials say.

06 Dec 2012 description
report British Red Cross

Sharon Reader, British Red Cross beneficiary communications delegate, reports on new approaches to tackling cholera in Sierra Leone:

It’s easy to persuade people to wash their hands and drink clean water when the spectre of cholera is looming. It’s not so easy when there is no scary disease waiting to strike. Be honest, do you always wash your hands before you eat?

06 Dec 2012 description


  • Firmer production estimates for 2012 confirm tightening wheat and maize supplies while the outlook for rice remains positive. In spite of a contraction in overall cereal utilization in 2012/13, the world cereal stock-to-use ratio is projected to decline by 2 percentage points from the previous season.

03 Dec 2012 description

Above-average harvests in progress across the country

Key Messages

02 Dec 2012 description
report UN Security Council


Security Council
6876th Meeting (AM)

The Security Council this morning commended Sierra Leone on the holding of successful presidential, parliamentary, district and local elections, calling upon all political parties and candidates to accept the results and to work with the Government in a constructive manner, through national dialogue and reconciliation.

30 Nov 2012 description

By Sonia Lowman, Communications Officer

“I didn’t choose this. I think it chose me,” says Sierra Leone’s top—and, until very recently, only—fistula repair surgeon, Dr. Alyona Lewis.