CLINTON COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) – Two days after Gina and Travis Sheets arrived in Clinton County to visit family in July, national and international headlines broadcasted what was happening back in the country they consider home- Liberia. Thousands were being infected with Ebola, about 50 percent of them have died.
The Sheets kept in contact with friends in their hometown of Ganta, Liberia. As 24-Hour News 8’s sister station, WLFI, previously reported, with limited resources in the country, the Sheets chose to stay in Indiana to keep themselves from becoming a burden in Liberia.
“In the community the number of Ebola cases confirmed and suspected have dwindled down,” Gina Sheets said.
With that news, the Sheets decided it was finally time to go back to Liberia. The city of Ganta is about eight hours from the capital city of Monrovia, where most of the Ebola cases have been.
They know Ebola is not the only hardship facing the country right now.
“We will be faced with a lot of hardship,” Gina said. “Food prices continue to be three to four times higher than what they should be, and the reality of families being left without families.”
The Sheets are missionaries teaching agriculture at the Liberia International Christian College. They will return in time for planting season, and will help the villagers farm.
Their work may be the same, but they know they will come back to a very different country.
“Liberia is a very social country,” Travis Sheets said. “So, having a conversation we may shake hands five or six times. So, to go back to a country that is not doing that is going to be really strange.”
Many disagree about people being allowed to fly in and out of Liberia. The Sheets said everyone around them has been supportive, and sometimes it’s understanding the poverty in the country that makes them understand the situation even more.
“The idea of going to the doctor to find out what’s wrong with you in the first few hours of not feeling good is just not possible,” Gina said.