Save the Children Sierra Leone Celebrates 100 years
Left to Right: Cuting the Centenary Cake;Deputy Minister of Education, Heather Campbell:Country Director SCI, Minister Social Welfare,Gender and Children's Affairs and Irish Ambassador.
2019 marks one hundred years since Eglantyne Jebb, founder of Save the Children stood up for the protection of children in war-torn Europe and; twenty years since the organization started supporting children in Sierra Leone recover from the 11-year civil war.
On Thursday 21st November 2019, at the Radisson Blu hotel in Freetown, Sierra Leone joined the rest of Save the Children around the world to celebrate a century of saving children and showcasing achievements.
We came together with the Irish Ambassador, Minister of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs and Deputy Minister of Basic Secondary School Education, government partners, Embassies, donors, UN agencies civils society and schools in operational areas, but the true leaders of the celebration were the children supported by various programmes. They told the story of the organisation’s interventions and impact it has made in their lives through testimonies, drama, a photo exhibition, ”through my eyes” which captured protection issues affecting children; an adolescent sexual reproductive health App demonstration and experience sharing on child-led advocacy and campaign activities.
In her opening remarks, Heather Campbell, Country Director for Sierra Leone reiterated the extraordinary story of Eglantyne Jebb and how “one person with passion, commitment and the right idea can make a huge difference in children’s lives.” This inspired her to join the organization years later after seeing the unwavering dedication to ensuring children survive, are educated and protected.
Irish Ambassador to Sierra Leone, Lesley Ni Bhrian, talked of our special partnership and commended the organization for its tremendous work in the country in health, wash and education particularly during the Ebola response. And stating that “It is no surprise that Ireland is working with Save the Children, the leading children’s rights organization in the world.”
“We have worked together with Save the Children to focus on the most vulnerable and excluded girls to address adolescent pregnancy and gender-based violence, as well as to support access to education and life skills because we believe that all children, regardless of their circumstances and without exception have the right to thrive and reach their full potential.” she said.
Deputy Minister of Primary and Basic Education, Mrs. Emily Gogra commended Save the Children for supporting children, and thanked the organization for the tireless effort made over the years to improve access to education for the most vulnerable groups in the country. She then launched the book ceremony where schools were given a copy of the child-friendly biography “Elglantyne Jebb; Life dedicated to Childhood. ”
The celebration came to an end with the official cutting of the cake by four women dedicated to children with all our partners.