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Reading: The Role of Women in Sierra Leone’s Development
Reading: The Role of Women in Sierra Leone’s Development

The Role of Women in Sierra Leone’s Development

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Sallu Kamuskay
By Sallu Kamuskay 69 Views 4 Min Read
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The Role of Women in Sierra Leone's Development
The Role of Women in Sierra Leone's Development

Women account for 52 percent of the total population in Sierra Leone yet occupy less than 20 percent of elected positions. Their voice, visibility, participation, and representation in elective and appointment positions remain very low compared to men. Some of these challenges include lack of economic independence, high illiteracy and entrenched customs and traditions, political violence and reprisals, the absence of progressive laws that protect and promote participation for women, and the lack of confidence to vie for public positions.

Sierra Leone is a country that has undergone significant changes in recent years. One of the most notable changes has been the increasing role of women in the country’s development. Women in Sierra Leone have played a crucial role in shaping the country’s future, and their contributions cannot be overlooked.

Historically, women in Sierra Leone have faced significant challenges, including discrimination and limited access to education and job opportunities. However, in recent years, there has been a growing recognition of the importance of women’s contributions to the country’s development.

One area where women have made significant progress is in politics. Sierra Leone has made great strides in promoting gender equality in politics compared to before, with women now holding key leadership positions at both national and local levels. For example, in 2018, Sierra Leone elected its first female mayor, Yvonne Aki-Sawyerr. This is a significant milestone for the country and shows that women can play a crucial role in leadership positions.

In addition to politics, women in Sierra Leone have also made significant contributions to the country’s economy. Women are often involved in small-scale businesses and agriculture, which are essential for the country’s economic growth. Women farmers, for example, play a crucial role in ensuring food security for their families and communities.

Women in Sierra Leone have also been at the forefront of promoting education and health. Women’s groups have been instrumental in advocating for girls’ education and improving maternal and child health outcomes. These efforts have helped to reduce maternal mortality rates and improve access to education for girls.

Despite these successes, women in Sierra Leone still face significant challenges. Gender-based violence remains a significant issue, with many women experiencing domestic violence and sexual assault. Women also continue to face discrimination and limited access to education and job opportunities.

To address these challenges, there is a need for continued efforts to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment. This includes initiatives to promote women’s education and economic empowerment, as well as efforts to address gender-based violence and discrimination.

Women in Sierra Leone have long generated significant advances in the economy and frequently serve a key part in ensuring their households’ survival. In rural Sierra Leone, women perform more than 60% of the agricultural work necessary for food production in the nation. Males, however, continue to have stronger opportunities for management and influence of the industry, ultimately demoting females to inferior jobs, according to USAID.

In conclusion, women in Sierra Leone have played a crucial role in the country’s development. Women’s contributions to politics, the economy, education, and health are essential for the country’s growth and progress. However, there is still much work to be done to promote gender equality and address the challenges that women face. It is essential to continue to support women’s empowerment and promote their participation in all aspects of society for Sierra Leone’s continued development.

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Sallu Kamuskay is a Sierra Leonean communication strategist, fixer, blogger, youth organiser, event manager, spokesperson, and public relations expert. His work has been regularly referenced and published by national and international media and public policy institutions. Sallu Kamuskay was a child during the brutal war in Sierra Leone. Growing up in the midst of conflict, Sallu witnessed unimaginable abuse of children and gross violations of human rights. The horrors he witnessed during the Civil War had a terrible impact on him at a very tender age. But despite the shock of the war, Sallu never lost hope. He started on a journey of recovery, studying, and working for a better future. At age 15, Sallu entered into the world of activism and advocacy. Sallu Kamuskay was the Vice President of the Young Leaders Organisation, a member of the National Youth Council. The Young Leaders is one of the oldest youth-led organisations in West Africa. The organisation was formed by a group of young leaders, and launched by the then Head of State/President of Sierra Leone. Sallu was part of the group of young leaders who participated in and contributed to the establishment of the National Youth Council. The Commonwealth supported the training for trainers programme with line ministries and youth stakeholders in which key, representatives of youth council, student union and civil society/private sector youth platforms were engaged and empowered in the effective engagement and inclusion of youth. Sallu is co-founder and Executive Director of the Salone Messenger, a global multimedia and public relations firm based In Sierra Leone. Sallu has worked on various developmental and policy issues such as Poverty, Climate Change, Human rights, Child Rights, Education, Health, Gender Equality, Civic Engagement, Government policies, Information Communication Technology for Development and the Sustainable Development Goals, and has also been contributing to various global events and advocacy campaigns. Sallu Kamuskay is the co-founder and Executive Director of the Salone Messenger, a global Multimedia and Public Relations Firm based in Sierra Leone with the latest news and information, on top stories, business, politics, entertainment, and more. Sallu is working with a leading technology company in Africa, Techfrica, that has recently developed and launched a social media, messaging Supfrica with over 150,000 downloads on the Google play store in less than 4 days. He is the Adviser and Media coordinator for the App to give people the platform to connect and communicate to help shape their future with a very fast internet that allows users that live in deprived and hard-to-reach areas with poor internet facility to be able to communicate as it allows and stronger on 2 and 3 G network reception. Sallu has over 9 years of experience in youth engagement, inclusion, and coordination both at local and global levels, giving voice to young people and engaging young people to build a better world. He has served as coordinator for the Wave Alliance which brought together youth-led organisations who attended an international training in South Africa organized by the International Organization – Waves for Change. Sallu is working with the MLT, Waves For Change, and the Government to develop safe spaces for young people, with a view to contributing to the overall development goals of young people including health, as well as to community rebuilding. Sallu is currently the Programme Director for the Wave Alliance, which is a coalition of youth-led and community-based organisations that have successfully introduced evidence-based Surf Therapy programs to young people in communities, with a focus on mental health, peace building and sustainable development. Sallu is currently the focal point and face of Africa’s Faces Social media platform which is a global Social media platform that brings together people from across the world to share their moments, connect, share videos, and interact with friends giving more preference to excluded continents like Africa. Sallu Kamuskay has devoted his time to working for or contributing to a number of national and international organizations and companies, including the Techfrica Technology Company, United Nations, ECOWAS, European Union, Commonwealth Africa Initiatives. This work has led him to travel to a number of countries to contribute to global youth platforms. Sallu is the lead Coordinator for Peace Tour programme, an initiative supported by the European Union, Africa Union, ECOWAS focusing on uniting and empowering young people and local communities. 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 http://ayvnewspaper.com/index.php/k2-categories/item/7350-america-stress-a-hero-to-recognize. 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.