Israel pledges $8.75 million to fund Ebola fight

Marcy Oster

(JTA) — Israel pledged $8.75 million to a United Nations fund aiming to halt the spread of the Ebola virus in West Africa.

The donation to the Ebola Response Multi-Partner Trust Fund, which was launched in September, represents the largest per-capita investment by any country, the U.S. Fund for UNICEF said in a Dec. 26 statement.

The Israeli government asked that a portion of the pledge be earmarked for the United Nations Children’s Rights & Emergency Relief Organization, or UNICEF, to provide services for children affected by the virus.

Caryl Stern, president and CEO of the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, thanked Israel for the contribution “and for recognizing that children are especially vulnerable during emergencies.”

“Although progress has been made in controlling Ebola,” she said, “much remains to be done to fully stamp out the disease and provide care to children whose lives have been upended by it.”

Israel already has sent mobile field hospitals and medical cargo to Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, and medical specialists to operate the clinics and train local health workers.

Ebola has infected nearly 19,000 people and claimed over 6,900 lives across West Africa.