A unique collaboration to engage with Sierra Leoneans in the Diaspora to participate on the First Lady’s health initiative program
Young Leaders-Sierra Leone (YLSL) , the First Lady of Sierra Leone’s Office, and the First Ladies Initiative (FLI), a non-profit working with select First Ladies Offices throughout Africa, are coming together to promote synergy between Sierra Leoneans in the Diaspora and the First Lady’s programming to improve health care in the country.
This collaboration is to engage with Sierra Leoneans in the United States of America to provide a firsthand report on development work in Sierra Leone, especially noting the innovative program of the First Lady Mrs. Sia Koroma.
Because of the urgent need to reduce mother, infant and child death rates in Sierra Leone, the focus of Mrs Koroma’s efforts are on developing a model Birthing Waiting Home and Community Resource Centre projects in particularly underserved areas in Sierra Leone.
The first Birthing Waiting Home is operating in Koinadugu as of 2009 and current effort is underway in the Mattru Jong area with support of Architecture for Humanity and FLI to establish a second site.
YLSL’s USA Branch leader, Ms. Theodosia Edwards said: “we will provide whatever level of support we can afford to support this important work.”
A Town Hall Meeting is being planned to engage with Sierra Leoneans in the US so that their input could be utilized to help shape and support Mrs. Koroma’s work to meet the Millennium Development Goals in Sierra Leone and to dialogue with the Diaspora community about other nation-building efforts underway. The meeting will take place on Saturday, 2 October 2010 in the greater Washington DC area at 5020 Sunnyside Ave, Suite 110, Beltsville, Maryland, 20750 USA from 4:30-6:30pm.
Speakers slated for this event will include the Director of Programs and Head of Operations for the Mrs. Koroma’s Office, Mr. Abraham Grass-Sesay who is representing Mrs. Koroma.
This meeting, which will be attended by international NGOs such as CARE, Concern and the International Medical Corps, which are already working on projects in Sierra Leone will be an opportunity for the Greater DC Area Sierra Leone community to come together to share their concerns and questions about their priority concerns for the home country and to identify concrete ways to be involved in supporting such work.
Dr West of the First Ladies Initiative said: “it is really important to that Sierra Leoneans in the Diaspora are involved in development in their country. “ Adding: “their input, moral support and engagement can be very helpful in developing Sierra Leone.”
Notes to Editors:
About Young Leaders-Sierra Leone (YLSL)
YLSL fosters a platform for young Sierra Leoneans and other stakeholders at home and in the Diaspora to participate actively in nation-building through dialogue, education, advocacy and networking. The organisation has been in operation since 2003, but it was in 2005 that the then President of Sierra Leone Dr. Ahmed Tejan Kabbah launched it. YLSL currently have branches in the UK and the US and its headquarter is in Sierra Leone.
For more information about the First Lady of Sierra Leone’s Office health initiatives http://www.firstladysl.org/
For more information please contact:
Young Leaders-Sierra Leone
Global President – Mr Unisa Dizo-Conteh
Tel: (+44) 794 649 0569
United States of America Co-ordinator – Theodosia M. Edwards
Director of Women’s Affairs – Dayo Spencer-Walters
Tel: (+1) 661 645 0082