UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador David Beckham is supporting our fight against Ebola through a video message to be broadcast across Sierra Leone – one of the worst-affected countries.

Video: David Beckham joins the fight against Ebola in Sierra Leone

It will be broadcast across national TV, in town halls and community centres across the country, as well as on giant outdoor screens and in football stadiums.

The video aims to help break down the stigma and shame connected to the disease and encourage more people to protect themselves and seek medical help.

Beckham has also recorded an additional video message urging people around the world to support and donate to Unicef’s urgent Ebola appeal, which is currently only 30% funded.

“Six years ago, I travelled to Sierra Leone with Unicef,” says Beckham. “I was inspired and honoured to have met so many amazing people and to see the beautiful country. While there I was lucky enough to get a glimpse into the lives of children in remote villages and the challenges they faced in a country then devastated by civil war. Today, the courageous people of Sierra Leone are facing an invisible enemy – a ferocious Ebola disease that’s spreading fast across West Africa.”

“The images are heart-wrenching. As a father, I can’t imagine what it must feel like, seeing your child suffer and feeling so helpless. But there is something you can do. Unicef is on the ground, working around the clock to protect children and families from this deadly virus. Please give Unicef the help it needs to tackle this crisis. We’re in a race against time.”

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa is the largest and deadliest the world has ever seen, with around 9,000 people infected across the region and at least 3,700 children who have lost one or both parents to the disease. Fear, misconceptions and rumours are fuelling the spread of the outbreak and complicating the humanitarian response.

Unicef is urgently working to control the disease by reaching families and communities with messages about the dangers of the disease, its symptoms, its methods of transmission, the importance of hygiene, and where to seek help. In Sierra Leone, as the leading organisation for social mobilisation and awareness raising, Unicef has reached nearly 80% of households with these vital messages.

Unicef teams are also distributing life-saving supplies, including gloves and chlorine, and supporting children and families affected by Ebola. But more money is urgently needed to halt the spread of the disease and protect those children in danger.

To find out more about how you can help, click here.

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