Nurse Pauline Cafferkey has revealed she is excited about a future fundraising trip to Sierra Leone, where she first caught the disease which almost claimed her life.
The medic, who is a cousin of soccer star Packie Bonner and has many relations in west Donegal, originally contracted Ebola in 2014 while volunteering in the West African country.
Ms Cafferkey has today revealed that she will be seeking closure in Sierra Leone following the ordeal which had her on the brink of death on two occasions.
Ms Cafferky will be actively fundraising for a children’s charity by doing a 10K run as part of a marathon in Makeni, Sierra Leone. Is it estimated that 20,000 children were orphaned by Ebola in Sierra Leone and Liberia. The funds raised will be donated to Street Child, a UK charity which supports children living in the crisis of the post-Ebola era.
The nurse who now works in South Lanarkshire spoke on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire programme about her need for closure after a ‘terrible couple of years’. Ms Cafferkey was brought before a misconduct panel of the Nursing and Midwifery Council last year, where she faced charges for returning to Glasgow with the Ebola virus. She also suffered many serious health scares and complications during her recovery.
Returning to Sierra Leone for the fundraising trip is “psychologically important” and she is not going back with any feelings of trepidation, Ms Cafferkey said.
“That’s where things started for me and I’ve had a terrible couple of years since then, so it’d be good to go back and have things come full circle for me.
“It’ll be a little bit of closure, and I want to end it with something good, something positive.”
“Most people have been supportive if they know that I’m going back. I’ve had a few people, like family friends, who say ‘just be careful when you get back there’.”
“I really want to go, I’m not going there with any trepidation or anything like that,” she said.
She told the programme today, on the International Day for Street Children, that the run will be a huge physical challenge for her as well as an emotional one.