USD260,000 for construction of 140 houses in Bo


…PLAN International supports displaced flood victims

May 6, 2016 By Joseph S. Margai

In an effort to ensure that displaced flood victims get shelter, PLAN International Sierra Leone has provided the sum of two hundred and sixty thousand United States Dollars (USD 260,000) for the construction of 140 houses in Bo.

This was disclosed yesterday by PLAN International Country Director, Casely Ato Cole, in a press conference held at PLAN’s head office in Freetown.

The PLAN Country Director said they would soon commission the houses and that over 3,000 displaced flood victims would reside there, adding that they have delayed to commission the houses because on ongoing construction of boreholes and other facilities.

“We also supported the national youth farm in Masiaka with the sum of two hundred and eighty thousand United States Dollars (USD280,000). This money was used to do an electronic mapping of the farm, provide planting materials, three boreholes with pumps and six tanks of 10,000 liters each. We also use it to pay labourers and administrative workers, among other things,” he disclosed.

Casely Cole also told pressmen that PLAN International was taking lead role in ensuring that conflicting clauses in the Customary Marriages and Divorces Act and that of the Child Marriages Act were harmonised. He cited specific sections in both Acts which state that a girl child could contract marriage even below the age of 18 with her consent, while another section says no girl child should marry below the age of 18.

He disclosed that they have supported the National Commission for Children in designing their website and developing a strategic plan, adding that they have also provided support to the Ministry of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs to construct an ultra modern building.

In the area of staff empowerment, he recalled that when he took office as Country Director of PLAN, there was only one Sierra Leonean international staff and that he pledged to take that number to five before he leaves office.

“Currently, there are four Sierra Leoneans serving as staff in other countries. I have also succeeded in getting 50/50 staff of men and women at management level in the national office,” he disclosed.

Highlighting PLAN International Sierra Leone’s recent achievements, Head of Advocacy and Communication, Mariama Munia Zombo said in April 2016 they received four global awards in relation to their contribution to the fight against the Ebola viral disease.

“The individual employee of the year (for hard work and commitment during the Ebola response) goes to Ansu Karim. The most innovative use of technology or social media during the Ebola response goes to Timothy Sam. One PLAN award and the First Lady’s Ebola Response Resistant Behaviour Change Project Award were awarded to Casely Cole,” she disclosed. She added that besides the four awards, PLAN also won one UK Business Charity award of 2016 because of its Girls Education Challenge Project.

She said PLAN International Sierra Leone’s new purpose was to strive for a just and fair world for girls.