News: Sierra Leone

Wordless Wednesday: Toy Car Sierra Leone
Tommy's car. Photo by Scott Cook
May 14, 2014 -

This is a little boy's toy in Sierra Leone.

How is it different from the toys you or your children played with?

How is it similar?

The Man Behind the Mokpangumba School Sierra Leone
Mr. Foday on the river
Apr 17, 2014 -

If you make the long walk through jungle and farmlands to the river that separates the small village of Mokpangumba from every school and medical clinic in the area, a small, thin man with a huge smile will probably greet you in a dugout canoe. 

A Place for Every Child to Excel Sierra Leone
Amie with one of her teachers at the skills school
Apr 7, 2014 -

The church goes quiet as Spengy, a Children of the Nations (COTN) sponsored child and the youth leader of the church, calls for testimonies. "What has happened in your life that you want to tell God thank you for?" He invites the congregation to share. 

Making Palm Oil in Sierra Leone Sierra Leone
Musu shows off the palm nuts he helped pick
Mar 28, 2014 -

In Sierra Leone, everyone cooks from scratch. And when I say from scratch, I mean, from scratch. Every ingredient has to be made by hand—including oil. 

So a common way to spend the afternoon in a village in Sierra Leone is picking and sorting palm nuts, then embarking on the long process of making them into oil. 

The whole thing takes about two hours, and it's an activity that many of your sponsored children regularly participate in. Here's what it looks like: 

Learning to Read in Sixth Grade Sierra Leone
Individualized attention is sometimes all these students need to catch up
Mar 20, 2014 -

Alieu had somehow made it to sixth grade without ever learning to read. He started school late, as many children in Sierra Leone do because their parents cannot afford school fees. By the time he was given the opportunity to attend Children of the Nations' school through COTN's child sponsorship program, it was hard for him to catch on.

The Only Deaf Boy in the Village Sierra Leone
Mar 14, 2014 -

Alhaji and Mohamed sit in the resource library, waiting for their bus back to school. They wait silently, but every once in a while, when one of them has something to say, he signs to the other and smiles.

Their Long Walk to School Sierra Leone
Mar 11, 2014 -

For Duramany and Mikailu, getting to school is quite a committment. They leave the village of Mokpangumba in Sierra Leone just after dawn to cross a river in a dugout canoe, then walk for about an hour through jungle and farmland to reach the Children of the Nations (COTN) junior secondary school in time for class.

When You Educate the Girl Child, You Educate the Whole Nation Sierra Leone
Mar 4, 2014 -

If it was not for you, Mariatu would have ended her education years ago. She began school when she was seven years old, but it was a challenge for her parents to find the money to send her. "My parents found it difficult to enroll me at school," she says.  

Joining My Sponsored Child's Family, Two Socks at a Time Sierra Leone
Me with my sponsored child, Titus
Feb 25, 2014 -

“Aunty, let me launder your socks.”

“Oh Titus, don’t worry, they are fine. See! I did not wet them.”

A serious, earnest look from the boy in front of me, then we quietly go back to rinsing dishes in front of his wood and mud house. I steal a glance at the head bent over our plastic bowl of murky, sudsy water.

Ten Minutes With Our New Sierra Leone Country Director Sierra Leone
Seeing Precious, who was homeless on the streets of Freetown before she came to
Feb 19, 2014 -

Every COTN staff member has a story about how God brought them to serve in this ministry. COTN–Sierra Leone's new country director is no exception. Mr. Sahr Yambasu sat down with me and my Venture Team one evening in Sierra Leone and answered some of our questions about his ministry and vision.