Our Mission Statement

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The Sierra Leone Youth Awareness (SiLeYa) organization is a multi-faceted, dynamic programme for liberating the potential, creativity, brilliance and power of those less than 25 years old. Striving to emancipate this and future generations of Sierra Leone from violence, tribalism and corruption, through partnerships with primary and secondary schools, along with students in higher education. Engaging youth throughout the nation in sports, the arts, cultural activities and exposure to tolerance-based, inclusive models of participatory democracy, the long-term aim is nothing less than a complete change in the social, political and cultural landscapes. SiLeYa is committed to teaching, implementing and organizing participatory democracy, in the form of regional and national youth peoples’ assemblies, where issues that are often fraught with conflict can be robustly and openly discussed, debated and deliberated in a manner that alleviates inter-tribal, patriarchal and homophobic biases. SiLeYa is committed to the rights of women and girls, including full access to contraception and abortion services. SiLeYa is committed to sexual education and prevention of sexually transmitted infections (STIs). SiLeYa is committed to the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered and queer peoples, including advocacy for the end to colonial-era laws that create non-inclusive and violent situations for these marginalized groups, who are our fellow citizens. SiLeYa is committed to ending tribalism in all forms, unifying the people of Sierra Leone to create a multi-cultural, tolerant environment in Sierra Leone, which would be more conducive for international investment. SiLeYa is committed to ending the “digital divide,” which leaves many without access to the Internet. Wherever we go, the aforementioned objectives are a part of our ethos and practise.

Aiming to change the social, cultural and political trajectory of a nation starts with the youth, and therefore we have met with young people at the following schools:

Freetown, Sierra Leone:

  1. Standard International Academy
  2. Government Model School
  3. Albert Academy
  4. Rokel Senior School
  5. International School Limited
  6. Saint Joseph Convent School
  7. Methodist Girls School
  8. Technical Senior School
  9. SOS School
  10. Faith Arena International Academy
  11. Royal Becklyn Academy
  12. Modern High School.

 

Bo, Sierra Leone:

  1. Compressive Senior School
  2. Queen Of the Rose School
  3. Saint Pauls School
  4. Methodist Boys and Girls School
  5. Compassionate High School

 And more are being added monthly!

Expanding SiLeYa’s impact in Sierra Leone will require external funding, both from domestic and international sources. Given that SiLeYa is the only youth-led and youth-oriented organization promoting the rights of women, LGBTQ, reproductive rights and sexual education, in Sierra Leone, and moreover in the whole of Western Africa, alongside comprehensive programmes to end tribalism, violence and corruption, we are in a unique position to seek grants and sponsors from many fellow-travellers, supporters and others committed to making Sierra Leone a better place for all. Stabilizing, improving and creating an environment of inclusive participatory democracy are essential for the long-term development of Sierra Leone. Attracting inward, international investment from technology companies, manufacturing, green energy and the like will require such an environment. SiLeYa wants to see Sierra Leone act as a model of democracy, inclusion, tolerance and development through direct engagement with the up and coming generations. Seeking to end the cycles of suffering in our nation, which date back to times of colonialism and militarism, SiLeYa aims for a peaceful, proud and prosperous Sierra Leone, one built by the power of the minds of the young. SiLeYa seeks to expand those minds beyond the myopic tribalism, patriarchy and violence through direct engagement, school-to-school, village-to-village, town-to-town and city-to-city.

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