Movement towards Education and Youth Empowerment-Sierra Leone (MEYE-SL) in August, 2017 conducted a two days baseline data collection survey on (Out of School Children) in seven (7) villages, Kwella, Foya-wulleh, Largo-kawema, Toobu, Njolorhun, Mogbodo, Mambayema, Konibortihun in Kori Chiefdom, Moyamba District. After compiling and analyzing all data collected, we came to realize that there are many school age children that are out of school, even though very few of the children attend school and even worse off many of the girls never complete their primary school education before they are forcefully married out. This makes them feel inferior to others and lead to their dropping out of school to engage in violence, prostitution, arm robbery, alcoholism, and misuse of drugs.
Through this a child school sponsorship program was initiated which started with ten (10) vulnerable children out of the fifty (50) vulnerable children that were targeted. The initiative supported them with access to school and learning materials and frequent follow up monitoring to help track their progress towards their education and work closely with structures like the School Management Committees SMCs, Teachers, parents in raising awareness and supporting the model of child friendly education system, especially girls in Kori Chiefdom. This action was because of fulfilling the organization’s commitment in working towards Sustainable Development Goal four (4) and thus the successful implementation of a planned school sponsorship project. At the end of 2016/2017 academic year, the project beneficiaries were evaluated to know their impact in the programme. Out of the ten (10) beneficiaries that were selected for the 2016/2017 academic year, upon evaluation after a year the organization was able to build a success story of three (3) of the selected beneficiaries who have created a huge impact to the success of the project.
Eva Lavalily a 6years old girl, with four brothers and two sisters who were all staying with their single widow mother at Toobu village, Kortiyai Section in Kori chiefdom. She is attending the Moyamba District Education Committee Primary School at Kawella and was in class two. She usually walks to school every morning, that’s she has to walk with other colleagues two miles to go to school and two miles to return from school and they have to cross through three streams to access their school. Eva lacks access to most of the basic learning materials, simply because her poor mother, who is a subsistence farmer cannot meet all the needs of Eva and her six siblings. Eva was selected to be part of our School Sponsorship Project based on her vulnerability in access the required learning materials and psychological support towards her schooling. These problems have been leading to the poor performance of Eva in school as the mother was even planning to let her drop out of school to join her siblings to the farm. Through the intervention of the School Sponsorship Programme, Eva was successfully selected and being in the programme has really helped to steer the hope and aspirations of Eva as her performance in school increased greatly. Upon evaluation of her 2016/2017 academic record this helps to prove the excellent performance of Eva in school as she was able to take up the 4th position in her class (two) to promote to class 3 and her interest, hope and passion for education have been increase as she now has time to study, goes to school frequently and also participate in her school work actively.
Bashiru Kovoma, is a 12years old boy. He lives together with four other grandchildren with their 78yrs old grandmother in a small village called Foya-wulleh, Kori Chiefdom. Bashiru is attending the Ansarul Islamic Primary School at Foya-Wulleh, Kori Chiefdom and he was in class four (4) when he was selected to be part of the School Sponsorship Programme for 2016/2017 academic year. Bashiru has been engaged in coal burning with his other siblings to help sustain their old grandmother who is 78 years old. Bashiru Kovoma lacks access to most of the basic learning materials to go to school like, uniform, shoe, bag, and even decent notebooks despite talking of textbooks. He used to wear his daily home dress to go to school with no decent shoes, no bags etc. He was barely having no external support as he only survived from his coal burning with his siblings through the help of God. Bashiru, being selected as beneficiaries in the School Sponsorship Programme was like a dream come true for Bashiru, as it has helped to boost his hopes and performance towards education. Upon evaluation of her 2016/2017 academic record this helps to prove the excellent performance of Bashiru Kovoma in school as he was able to take up a double promotion which took him from class four to class six. The recent performance of Bashiru has made his teachers and his communities, his old grandmother and family members to grow much interest towards his education as they now allow him to be having time to study and Bashiru has grown much passion for his school work.