By Ballah “Hoody” Kargbo
May 16th, 2017
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It all started during the Ebola scourge in Sierra Leone. As we were fighting to eradicate the virus from our country it was also observed that there are other cankerworms destroying the lives of people in my country especially girls which were teenage pregnancy and sexual assaults. According to statistics, sexual assaults increased from 1,485 in 2013 to 2,201 in most cases the perpetrators of such act go free without facing any form of justice. Likewise, it was reported that 14,000-20,000 teenage girls were impregnated during this period and to worsen the situation the Ministry of education introduced a highly controversial policy banning all pregnant teenagers from attending schools or taking national exams.
With all these things I saw happening in the lives of girls, I felt very cold and helpless, so I discussed this problem with my cousin but at first, we thought it was impossible to do something to help. That feeling held on to us for quite some time till we recalled Martin Luther King Jr.’s quote which transformed our way of doing things. It says “Every man should decide whether he walks in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness this is the judgement. Life’s most persistent and urgent question is; what are you doing for others?”. With that, we were able to overcome the thoughts of impossibilities and in August 2015 I and my friend Michael Kpaka implemented the idea of forming a girl child foundation in Bo Sierra Leone, which is now called Inspiration 4 Her. It is geared towards motivating and inspiring girls whose dreams and aspirations have been completely shattered down. Girls who have ended up in mediocrity, prostitution, drugs, violence and other unwanted choices. We believe that bringing girls into entrepreneurship, leadership, public speaking and advocacy will play a great role in their lives.
Inspiration for Her became legal and registered in the Ministry of Social Welfare Gender and Children’s Affairs in Sierra Leone. So far Inspiration for Her has been organising activities such as seminars, conferences, radio talks and school talks about the importance of education for girls in Sierra Leone.
This coming summer we have with the help of The Student Initiative Fund and GoMAD’s funding been able to set up a larger project in Sierra Leone. We have set up conferences in each and every region in Sierra Leone, that is the Eastern, Western, Northern and Southern regions, with more emphasis on the more unprivileged regions such as urban areas. During these conferences, we will be giving aid with school fees to promising girls, and also cater for their school materials. We believe that it will be a step in the right direction. Hopefully, one day in the future all girls will have the proper education in Sierra Leone.
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