6 Apr 2015

Ebola orphans risk 'being forgotten'

8:30 pm on 6 April 2015

A charity working in West Africa has warned that children orphaned by Ebola risk being forgotten, as the region recovers from the epidemic.

12-year old Rosaline Koundiano pictured in Gueckedou in eastern Guinea, 16 October 2014. Rosaline was one of the first children to survive the ebola virus. It took weeks, however, before she was accepted again into her community.

12-year old Rosaline Koundiano pictured in Gueckedou in eastern Guinea, 16 October 2014. Rosaline was one of the first children to survive the ebola virus. It took weeks, however, before she was accepted again into her community. Photo: AFP / Kristin Palitza / DPA / dpa Picture-Alliance

A new report by the British-based organisation, Street Child, says 25,000 West African children have lost their parents to Ebola.

Charity founder Tom Dannat said many orphans were resorting to selling sex so they could feed themselves.

He said girls were particularly vulnerable.

"Put simply, girls have got more to sell to survive than boys and when push comes to shove girls are feeling obliged to sell themselves to survive themselves and to enable their families to survive.

"The reason above all reasons why girls are doing what they're doing and why everyone is so desperate is because they are hungry."

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