Sierra Leone

Why I Put My Trust In Strangers?

Memuna Forna | Posted 04.09.2017 | UK
Memuna Forna

Sierra Leone stumbles and falls from one extreme horror to another - war, disease, and natural disaster. We are one of the poorest countries in the world, with the world's worst mother and child mortality rate. Our people are intimately aware of the daily cruelty of terrible poverty. But if those who experience the worst of all this are yet to lose their humanity, I have no right to either.

Civil War, Ebola, And Now Mudslides - Why I Urge Everyone To Help Sierra Leone's Resilient People Survive This Latest Devastation

Steven Caulker | Posted 30.08.2017 | UK
Steven Caulker

I saw first-hand how years of civil war followed by the Ebola epidemic had left its mark. So three weeks ago, when I learned that a landslide had hit the country's capital, Freetown, and surrounding areas, I was beyond heartbroken. How much suffering and hardship can the people of Sierra Leone experience in one lifetime?

Sierra Leone Mudslides: Responding To The Crisis

Megan Lees-McCowan | Posted 29.08.2017 | UK
Megan Lees-McCowan

Arriving a week after the mudslides, the government and third sector coordination system has shifted into gear. Banners are springing up at the five distribution centres and all around the Regent area in particular - a bit of an NGO free-for- all. I am proud that our partner Street Child of Sierra Leone is delivering daily food to the survivors who lost their homes. We're feeding 4000 people a day with funds from a generously supported public appeal we launched last Monday, and funds from UK AID.

Sierra Leone Mudslide Disaster - Every Day, Every Hour, I Think About The Women And Children

Maytou Ganda | Posted 22.08.2017 | UK
Maytou Ganda

The landslide is huge in scale and the torrential rains that caused it keep coming - destroying people's livelihoods and crops and leaving survivors hungry and unable to support themselves and their families. Freetown's drainage system is overwhelmed, creating waterways that churn towards us as we try to get things done and we keep having to find new ways of getting access to the communities who so urgently need our help.

The Toughest Day Of Aid Worker Career: Helping Those Devastated By The Mudslide In Sierra Leone

Ben Munson | Posted 18.08.2017 | UK
Ben Munson

I left at 4am and took the three-hour car journey to the capital. As I approached Freetown, the mudslide was visible from miles away. Nothing could have prepared me for what I saw. The sheer size of it was frightening.

Freetown Mudslides: Sierra Leone's Next Challenge And How We Can Help

Jo Cooke | Posted 15.08.2017 | UK
Jo Cooke

In the early morning of Monday 14th August, roads in the Sierra Leone capital of Freetown turned into rivers and houses were washed away after a heavy night of rain caused chaos. Hundreds of people were buried alive in a mudslide that swept through some of the poorest communities in Freetown. As the death toll continues to rise, the international community must respond.

The Day I Left 75 Relatives To Die

Yabome Gilpin-Jackson | Posted 05.07.2017 | UK
Yabome Gilpin-Jackson

life less ordinary banner It was the day I learnt that the feeling of a farewell cloaked in the shadow of death was worst than the finality of a loved one's funeral. The pain in my body in that moment far surpassed what I'd felt just nine months prior at my father's funeral. So I did not, could not, say bye when we drove away.

Ebola Isn't Over Yet: How Pauline Cafferkey's Return To The Country Reminds Us That The Virus Still Haunts Sierra Leone

Imogen Calderwood | Posted 16.06.2017 | UK
Imogen Calderwood

For many thousands of people, Ebola isn't over. It was a trigger that has sparked so many other issues - homelessness, unemployment, poverty - that will be felt in Sierra Leone for years to come unless its people receive ongoing support to get back on their feet. Without help to rebuild their businesses and get their children back into schools, many more people to come will fall victim to the Ebola crisis.

Raise Your Voice, Use Your Vote

Eleanor Margetts | Posted 08.05.2017 | UK
Eleanor Margetts

Eleanor Margetts meeting Pope Francis alongside Senior UN advisor Jeffery Sachs (c) Gabriella Marino Right now, the world seems an especially scary p...

Why Scottish Nurse Pauline Cafferkey's Trip To Sierra Leone Is So Vital For The Ebola Orphans Still Living With The Virus' Devastating Impact

Imogen Calderwood | Posted 25.04.2017 | UK
Imogen Calderwood

Nurse Pauline Cafferkey hit the headlines in December 2014 when she became the first person in the UK to be diagnosed with Ebola during the devastatin...

So they have found a large diamond. How come we remain poor?

PJ Cole | Posted 19.03.2017 | UK Universities & Education
PJ Cole

A pastor has just found the second largest diamond mined in Sierra Leone weighing 709 carats. The diamond is the talk of town and of course the storie...

One Year After West Africa Was Declared 'Ebola-Free', The Crisis Is Far From Over

Molly Hodson | Posted 13.01.2017 | UK
Molly Hodson

As we stand with Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea in remembering those who lost their lives to Ebola and in celebrating the end of the epidemic, we must not forget that life has got worse, rather than better, for some of Ebola's hardest-hit orphans and it is not time for us to turn away yet.

Beyond Ebola

Alison Hubert | Posted 19.12.2016 | UK
Alison Hubert

As 2016 draws to a close I find myself reflecting on Book Aid International's work over the last 12 months.

Why Two Plasters Give Me Hope For The Future

Claire Morris | Posted 01.11.2016 | UK
Claire Morris

We are knee-deep in bad news and I've lost count of the number of conversations I have had with people anxious about the future, particularly for women and girls, but I am staying hopeful. And the reason: two plasters.

Pikin To Pikin Tok - The Power Of Participation For Unlocking Girls Potential

Gerison Lansdown | Posted 18.10.2016 | UK
Gerison Lansdown

Photo credit: Andrea Gordon The Global Education Monitoring Report 2016 identifies that education is a fundamental tool for empowering young girls a...

Why Aren't Sierra Leone's Girls Going To School?

Megan Lees-Cowan | Posted 11.10.2016 | UK
Megan Lees-Cowan

International Day of the Girl Child is about standing with girls like Isatu so that she can create the future she wants for her daughter. It serves as an important reminder to all of us to examine gender inequality in our own communities and our global community. Tackling these problems won't just benefit girls, it will benefit everyone.

Sierra Leone Calls Time On Petty Corruption

Memuna Forna | Posted 03.09.2017 | UK
Memuna Forna

Reducing corruption...would represent a significant and direct benefit for a substantial number of Sierra Leone's people - more money in their pockets, improved access to services that are vital in the literal sense of the word, and the satisfaction of knowing they can be part of the solution to the problem.

The Sierra Leonean Fashion Designer Who Is Helping Children Play Their Way Out of Poverty

Memuna Forna | Posted 18.07.2017 | UK Style
Memuna Forna

In Sierra Leone, fashion designer Jenneh Mason is best known for frocks and fashion shows. She also dreams of public playgrounds, lots of them, dotted all across the country bringing safe places to play for children who are unlikely to have ever seen one, imagined one or even understand the concept of safe play.

Celebrating UN Peacekeepers

Baroness Anelay | Posted 28.05.2017 | UK Politics
Baroness Anelay

There may be obstacles on the way to reaching our peacekeeping goals, but we are more committed and determined than ever to overcome them in order to ensure peacekeeping delivers for the UK and the wider world.

My Country Cannot Become a Safe Haven for the Deadly Virus of Corruption

Isha Johansen | Posted 26.05.2017 | UK Sport
Isha Johansen

It is in all our interests to find a cure for corruption in sports and in the wider world. If we fail to act as decisively as we need to, we will watch as it spreads, infects and destroys like a deadly virus.

Ebola's Gone but Sierra Leone's Health System Is on Its Knees

Heenali Patel | Posted 10.05.2017 | UK
Heenali Patel

The rows of white tents that used to house patients at the Ebola Treatment Centre in the Moyamba District of Sierra Leone have been disinfected and taken away, and the smell of smoke and chlorine that once filled the dusty air has faded... This time last year, the centre was on the frontline of the fight against Ebola.

Over 90 Million Reasons Why UK Aid Works to Save Lives

Cath Nixon | Posted 07.04.2017 | UK
Cath Nixon

If you have seen the Mail on Sunday's petition to scrap the UK's promise to the poorest people in the world, or even much of the other anti-aid covera...

Ebola and Civil War Has Left Sierra Leone Bruised - But Far From Broken

James Cleverly | Posted 26.03.2017 | UK Politics
James Cleverly

At the start of the month I returned to Sierra Leone after more than two decades away. As the country of my mother's birth, I spent a lot of time there as a child and my memories centred around the people, their energy and enthusiasm. The civil war and Ebola have undeniably taken their toll on these things in my absence, it certainly hasn't destroyed them.

Ebola's Legacy Is Still Deadly for Mums and Babies in West Africa

Jo Lehmann | Posted 12.02.2017 | UK
Jo Lehmann

Ebola no longer makes the headlines, driven out by news of Zika virus and the crisis in Syria. But the terrible legacy of Ebola persists in West Africa, for the survivors who suffer stigma and fear long-term complications, and for all of those who are vulnerable and in need of healthcare at a time when the health system has been brought to its knees.

African Businesses Will Be Shut Out by Increased Schengen Border Restrictions

Memuna Forna | Posted 15.12.2016 | UK
Memuna Forna

Schengen in on life support and West African manufacturers should pay close attention. They are already convinced they won't be able to compete with the cheaper, better quality imports, which will be the inevitable result of a forthcoming EU/Africa free trade agreement. For most, exporting to Europe is a distant dream anyway. Increased border restrictions will make it even more unlikely.