Σάββατο, 27 Φεβρουαρίου 2010
The story of Mohamed Bangura. A young man from his rural community in Sierra Leone seekS work in the city.
Like many youth in Sierra Leone, Mohamed Bangura finished his secondary education only to find that there were few opportunities for work in his community. He tried his hand as an auto mechanic, but couldn’t make it with older and more experienced mechanics already in his village.
With time to spare, Bangura began volunteering with Heifer’s Faroad Baka Women’s Agricultural Group. Mohamed put his mechanic skills to work helping run the group’s power tillers, enabling the women to break up the ground for planting crops. He enjoyed the work, but it was seasonal and Mohamed still had no steady source of income.
Mohamed considered farming himself, but he knew that agriculture was often a difficult way to make a living. His family had once raised goats, but when they were infected with a disease there was simply no veterinary care in the area and all of the goats died.
With his options at home fading, Mohamed began to think his only hope was to follow the well worn path of his peers toward the capital city, Freetown—contributing to the continuing drain of educated young people from rural areas.
The Foroad Baka Women’s Agricultural Group, seeing that they might lose one more young person to the city, offered Mohamed another opportunity. The women’s group convinced him to be trained as one of their Community Animal Health Workers. Mohamed, knowing that few of his peers had found work in the city and that even fewer returned to support their families, accepted the women’s offer.
Now Mohamed is empowered, the only male member of his community with animal healthcare skills. He is putting those skills to work to ensure that his community’s animals thrive and avoid the fate of his family’s goats. In exchange for the Women sending him for Community Health education, Mohamed provides their animals with care for free and sells medicine and care to the rest of his community.
“I am now permanently engaged in my community,” Mohamed says, “I see no reason to move to the city. I now have a means of livelihood for the rest of my life. I am grateful to Heifer.”