July 13, 2015 By Hassan Gbassay Koroma
The Young Men Christian Association (YMCA), one of the oldest youth serving organizations in the country established in 1912 with a vision to empowering young people, Friday 10 July certified 35 community volunteers at Kolleh Town, Gray Bush on disaster risk management.
Speaking at the certification ceremony, Project Manager for Disaster Risk Management at YMCA, Francis Refful, said some time ago YMCA, Sierra Leone Red Cross and the Office of National Security conducted a training for community volunteers in slum communities in Freetown on disaster risk management.
He noted that many disasters had taken place in slum communities, especially in Freetown, and that because the YMCA is working with slum communities, they thought it prudent to engage residents in those communities by way of providing them with basic training that they could use to mitigate the consequences of disaster in their respective communities.
He said they have completed a water tank project at Kolleh Town, which now enables people in the community to have access to clean and safe drinking water.
“We have started working in these slum communities two years ago and one of our main focuses is community disaster management, that is why we have decided to target and engage the community people by way of providing training for them that will enable them to help in minimising disaster in their communities,” he said.
He added that they would continue to provide training for the community volunteers every two years.
Also, Councilor for Ward 382, Maxwell Lebbie, thanked the YMCA team for the training, noting that the good work the association is doing in slum communities is visible.
Councilor Lebbie said the YMCA is always with them even in times of disaster, and thanked the facilitators for training youth volunteers in the community on how to handle disaster.