Liberia and COVID19

How are things in Liberia right now with COVID19??

This is a question that I’ve been getting a lot recently and I’ve struggled back and forth between giving the short version and the long version of the answer. On one hand, I don’t want people to worry about us nor do I want to overwhelm people with a response when I know how much they themselves are going through.

On the other hand, a some people are genuinely curious and want to better understand the nitty gritty details of how this COVID19 crisis is affecting people’s reality in other parts of the world so they can know how to help and pray. I’ve had a lot of positive and truly humbling and awe inspiring responses from people with whom I’ve shared the “long version.”

I also know that many families are looking for resources to be able to share with their kids that help to paint a picture of what life is like in other countries, especially now.  I actually used a lot of the information in this blog in a presentation this past week with the University of Maryland students in the online course that I am still co-teaching and many really appreciated it. Therefore, I’ve decided to share here on our blog, for those who are interested and want to read through the details, about what life in Liberia is like amidst COVID19. As of today, April 6th, 2020, we have 13 confirmed cases total.

Disclaimer: This is not a comprehensive list by any means. Also, this is not meant to overwhelm anyone, it’s OK to not read through this if you don’t feel you have the emotional capacity to do so right now (trust me, I’ve been there too). This is not meant to make anyone feel guilty. This is not meant to compare and in doing so invalidate or diminish anyone else’s feelings or present reality. The struggle for everyone IS real. Every single person on the planet is struggling right now in their own way. I understand that and I know that God sees and cares for them ALL. He sees and cares for those who are struggling financially, those who are struggling emotionally, those who are struggling physically, and those who are struggling spiritually with knowing that He is there. He cares and He is holding close the worries and fears of all His children around the world.

This is merely meant to show what life is like here right now. Each country will have their own unique challenges to addressing this virus (political, financial, cultural, etc) and these are simply Liberia’s challenges (as well as a couple noteworthy assets) that will factor into the fight against this COVID19 virus:

I’ve broken all the information down into categories. Just hover over the image to see the category (healthcare, transportation, livelihoods, etc) and then click and scroll down to read the description of the situation underneath each photograph.

I tried my best to capture both the challenges as well as assets that Liberia has in overcoming this virus. I don’t like it when Liberia, or any other country for that matter, is portrayed as entirely helpless. Liberians are strong, resilient, creative, and hopeful. I have no doubt that ordinary people will be used in extraordinary ways here in the fight to educate, protect, and care for the communities. There are some challenges that seem overwhelming, and that I as an outsider can’t really come up with any good solutions to. But I have confidence that through teamwork and collective brainstorming and resource sharing, along with the precious intervening Hand of God, there will be new ideas shared and that we will all rise together out of the ashes, transformed and hopefully changed for the better. Like many of my Liberian friends are reminding me “God carried us through Ebola, surely He will carry us through this.”

Above all, we know that He will carry us through and be with us in our times of trial. I pray that as we remember these truths and hear these testimonies, that we too will be encouraged to continue trusting in Him and boldly living out our faith in new ways each and every day so that more might come to know Him and rejoice in His Name.

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