The Heroism Of West African Ebola Workers | WGBH News

An Ebola virus quarantine in Eastern Sierra Leone. Harvard Business School historian Nancy Koehn said community leaders have been doing the bulk of work to combat the virus, while world leaders stand by. Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/69583224@N05/ / Flickr

An Ebola virus quarantine in Eastern Sierra Leone. Harvard Business School historian Nancy Koehn said community leaders have been doing the bulk of work to combat the virus, while world leaders stand by. Credit https://www.flickr.com/photos/69583224@N05/ / Flickr

The Ebola outbreak is a crisis that exists on a level above political and geographical boundaries. The rapid spread has forced organizations like the World Health Organization (WHO) to wrangle with politicians and governing bodies. The process has been slow and fraught. "Someone has to stop this. It's not going to be the WHO. It's not going to be the government of these nations. ... They basically shook their heads, and sat on their fingers for months before they did anything, as has most of the West."

By necessity, other actors have stepped in to fill the void, and they've done so at great risk to their lives and livelihood. But what type of person puts herself in the middle of a humanitarian crisis?"

It's less about characteristics, and more about the inner power and spirit that lies within us, often dormant — and then something ... calls it forth," Koehn said. "I think what we see here — and those people who put themselves on the [Boston Marathon] finish line, those emergency workers who just pour into danger zones — is the spirit that gets unlocked, and is incredibly powerful, that makes an enormous difference ..., much more difference than any of these huge, big leaders that we put up on pedestals."

via The Heroism Of West African Ebola Workers | WGBH News.