The month of October ushered in an unprecedented humanitarian action, going down in the history of Sierra Leone as the first nation-wide educational intervention for children and orphans of war affected amputees.
Melqosh Mission International, working in partnership with Scarlet Haven Foundation, gave scholarships – provision of school, college and university fees, plus educational packs and bags, uniforms, school shoes etc – to 332 beneficiaries, including young war affected amputees. This charitable activity was a National rollout; children, orphans and young amputees living in Amputee Camps in Western Area, Northern, Southern and Eastern Provinces of Sierra Leone benefited from this great subvention.
Life for Amputees in Sierra Leone whose limbs were brutally hacked-off by rebels during the country’s civil war is extremely austere; many are socially excluded, they have no access of services. Even the free education which was promised to them by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s was never implemented. As a result, many children and orphans of war amputees are illiterates, some of the girl orphans have turned to prostitution as their only way out. There is also a high prevalence of teen mothers amongst the girl orphans of deceased amputees.
The vision carrier of this phenomenal non-profit organisation, Pastor Faith Okrafo-Smart, has dedicated her life to transforming the lives of war amputees, their families, war orphans and widows. She has volunteered her time and resources for nine and half years working with this neglected and margnalised group in Sierra Leone.
“My vision is to see our beneficiaries beat the odds that are stacked against them; life has dealt them an immeasurable blow, by the Grace of God they shall arise from the ashes of life and become a strong nation of people,” she said.
One thing that can be said about this charity is its zeal to support this particular group, time and time again; doing major extensive work, including medical missions to reduce the high mortality rates amongst war amputees in many parts of the country over the years.
The chairman of the Amputee and War Wounded Association, Mr Edward Conteh said: “I am totally speechless at what Melqosh Mission International has done for us. My primary concern has always been in the area of our children’s education. We are extremely happy with this timely educational support”.
Mr Conteh’s daughter is one of the twenty-eight secondary-school girls who benefitted from an all-expense-paid Boarding School Scholarship at Harford School for Girls.
Thanks to this trail-blazing organisation, hundreds of children and youths living in Grafton, Jui, Hastings, Rokel, Waterloo, Newton, MaSiaka, Port Loko, Moyamba, Bo, Makeni, Magburaka and Kono have been empowered to go to schools, colleges and universities this academic year.
Concord Times, November 21, 2017