The ECOWAS Volunteers Programme (EVP) in Sierra Leone has announced its plans to commemorate ECOWAS Day (May 28th) by visiting orphanages across the country and providing essential supplies.

The line of plans and activities were outlined by Garga Gbessagee, Country Coordinator of the ECOWAS Volunteers Programme in Sierra Leone, and Mohamed Jalloh, Administrative Officer of the program.

They emphasized that the primary objectives of the visitation are to assess needs, build relationships with the kids, and offer emotional support as part of building the hope of better lives in them, adding that, the provision of food and water will attend to their immediate nutritional requirements and enhance their overall health which may also serve to demonstrates compassion and support for marginalized groups and subsequently encourage others to make contributions to their well-being where and as deemed necessary.

Giving out the full description on their planned activities, Coordinator Gbessagee noted that at least ten orphanages and six impoverished communities across the nation are set to benefit from these visits.

In his statement, Mohamed Jalloh stated that the items they will provide would include bags of rice, assorted snacks and cereals, beverages, and sanitary pads and that the orphanages they will be visiting are located in Freetown, Pujehun, Makeni, Kenema, Kono, and Kabala as a start-up of the initiative.

He furthered thay event will span for seven days, from May 28 to June 3, 2024 and that the extended period may allow them to reach as many orphanages and communities as possible and ensure that the aid is distributed effectively in reaching out to the actual beneficiaries.

It was revealed that, the ECOWAS Commission  initiated the ECOWAS Volunteers Programme (EVP) with the support of the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Volunteers Programme (UNV), as part of the ECOWAS Peace and Development Programme (PADEP).

The Programme harnesses the skills and expertise of qualified citizens to serve as volunteers and change agents by contributing to the economic and social development of their host communities. It recruits young and dynamic citizens within the community, and deploys them to different areas of need within the region, based on demand, to support the regional integration efforts and participate in the social and national development agenda of their host communities and organisations, while building their own skills and professional competencies.