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Celina Kamanda - a young Ebola survivor | by DFID - UK Department for International Development
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Celina Kamanda - a young Ebola survivor

Celina Kamanda, 18, stands near the water's edge in Magazine Wharf - one of Freetown's largest slums, where families were hit hard by the Ebola outbreak.

 

Celina's mother became sick last year – but she didn't believe it was Ebola. She thought it must be malaria.

 

Her mother died from the disease in December. Soon after, Celina became sick too.

 

She went to Hastings where she was tested and treated at a centre backed by UK aid. She was the only one of her family to go. Tragically, her father, brother and cousins remained, and also fell victim to Ebola.

 

Although the outbreak is nearing its end, Celina misses her family.

 

"I feel happy, but I'm not happy. I won't be happy because I loved my parents.

 

"But I am happy that we will be free of this disease, and that I am the one who survived and can tell my story."

 

Now Celina is back in school, which is helping her to move forward.

 

"I like seeing my friends at school. It helps me forget about the past"

 

"I would like to be a doctor. I want to save lives. When I was in the treatment centre, I saw people suffering. But I have passed through the experience, and now I want to be able to look after others."

 

The Ebola outbreak is nearing its end in Sierra Leone: the country is set to be declared Ebola free on Saturday 7 November.

 

UK aid will support a longer term package of help for Ebola survivors, helping them to restore their livelihoods, making sure they have access to healthcare and tackling the stigma they may face when reintegrating into their communities.

 

Picture: Simon Davis/DFID

 

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This image is posted under a Creative Commons - Attribution Licence, in accordance with the Open Government Licence. You are free to embed, download or otherwise re-use it, as long as you credit the source as 'Simon Davis/DFID'.

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Taken on November 2, 2015