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Meet David Musa Kargbo: 23-Year-Old Creative Henna Designer Redefining body art in Sierra Leone

David Musa Kargbo Henna design
Meet David Musa Kargbo: 23-Year-Old Creative Henna Designer Redefining body art in Sierra Leone

Meet David Musa Kargbo: 23-Year-Old Creative Henna Designer Redefining body art in Sierra Leone

There is a particular sensation that henna tattoo brings to our body. Each stroke and pattern imprinted is an art that soothes the skin. And an art that bridges cultures, whichever part of the world you come from.

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Henna tattooing dates back to ancient Egypt, some 9,000 years ago. Its last reigning queen, Cleopatra is said to have used henna to adorn her body and even beautify herself. Egyptians also used henna to paint nails of the mummies before they were buried.

Here in Sierra Lone, there is one name that is known among the Henna Community.

David Musa Kargbo, a 23-year-old creative Henna Designer who drop out of school to do Henna Designing, David, like the stories of many young people is different, due to lack of money when he was going to school, David’s elder brother visited Sierra Leone in 2013 and introduce him to Henna Design, he learnt and started doing it for his friends in school who admired him. David quickly transformed this to business when he realised that his female friends in school liked and admire the work,  David paid his secondary and senior secondary school education through the little money he earn from the business, He sat to his WASCCE examination and got a complete requirement to enter university.


David couldn’t enrolled to the university because of insufficient funds, he then resorted to doing Henna design to be able to raise funds to enter university.

David has been doing this form of art for over three 8 years now. He has worked for big celebrities and important personalities in the country.

“I am not actually a born artist, and I always try hard to develop it. This is my first form of art, I was taught by my elder brother when he visited us sometime in 2013. I was inspired and wanted to learn, fast forward to after I have learned, My female friends in school who I design for free admired my work” he explained.

Henna Design Sierra Leone

David started doing this art after he realized that he needed to engage on something that could help him raise some funds. He was 14-years-old when he embarked on this journey “I was a student and my friends were always encouraging me to do it on their hands, so I make henna for friends and students, it’s like a charity.” David disclosed to Salone Messenger.

A hobby that turned out to be a profession. Being a henna artist for 8 years in Sierra Leone brought her closer to the community. “I first started in my community at Upgun when they called me during Eid.”

There’s an explosion of demand for his service since he started working in Upgun. he has built his name in the country. Henna tattooing brought him to many places. “I get to interact with people, go to their houses. It’s a unique experience,” he said.


Sallu Kamuskay

Sallu Kamuskay is a Sierra Leonean activist, storyteller, and blogger. He was born in Sierra Leone but later relocated to Guinea as a refugee because of the war in his country. Sallu Kamuskay uses his phone to engage on social media, under the name ‘’Salone Messenger’. He Co-Founded the Salone Messenger platform after his experience of the war, Ebola, and injustices. According to him, silence was the root cause of war, and of many social injustices, we continue to face as a nation. In 2013, during the Ebola crisis, Sallu Kamuskay took the risk and volunteered to fight Ebola. He spent some months in both safe and unsafe places; helping the victims and telling their sad stories. The election in 2018, left a divided country with communities fighting on tribal lines. This inspired Sallu Kamuskay to serve as the coordinator of the United Sierra Leone peace concert, which was organized in 4 major parts of the country, targeting violent communities and troubled youth. Sallu Kamuskay led a group of entertainers, activists, and organizations across the country on a peace tour, a program supported by the European Union, United Sierra Leone, Africa Union, ECOWAS, and the Messeh Leone Trust. Sallu Kamuakay has also served as a staff writer for the Hidden Voices Magazine. Over the years, Sallu Kamuskay has been using his Techno phone to be able to tell stories, the phone he used to tell the story of Gbessay during Ebola who was admitted at one of the Ebola treatment centers after rumors that she had Ebola when the actual sickness was ulcer, she was almost abandoned at the treatment canter with no medication provided to her. She could have died. Sallu told the story via social media and was able to secure funding from the United Sierra Leone to buy her medication and advocated for her. She was later discharged and taken home, He did the same to a patient that died and was abandoned in the street, Sallu Kamuskay used his phone and shared the message across, the corps was later taken and buried. It could have been more disaster without his voice. The story of late America Stress 3-year-old daughter. The hero’s daughter was abandon after his father's death. He shared her sad story and was able to get a sister who has taken the child as her own and is currently providing her with educational support. The article of America Stress can be read on the link below Sallu Kamuskay feels the stories of Gbessay, America stress and that of many others need to be told. The media house we have cannot better tell these stories, they are better reporters than telling human interest stories. He created the Salone Messenger platform and brought together passionate storytellers to be able to tell these compelling stories.

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