Why Sierra Leone?
The Collective - Sierra Leone was set up in 2011 by Charlie Habershon, another Teach First ambassador. He first visited the country in 2006, and was struck by its natural beauty, the warmth of its people, and its huge potential, despite the major challenges it faces in poverty and unemployment. Sierra Leone ranks 177 of 187 on the UNDP development index with 77% of Sierra Leone's citizens living in poverty and 62.79% living on less than $1.25 a day (UNDP Multidimensional Poverty Index 2011). Ten years of civil war left the country with a large skills gap as many missed out on an education. This gap needs to be reduced. This is why The Collective–Sierra Leone was set up.
What does The Collective do?
The Collective is a capacity building organisation. Its mission is to provide individuals and organisations with the tools to create positive change. The Collective runs a local NGO support network in Freetown, providing workshops and training to small organisations in skills like basic accounting, marketing and communications, project management and monitoring and evaluation. The network also provides a forum for organisations to meet and share good practice. Capacity building and leadership development can provide vital skills to lift the country out of poverty, and with the support of organisations and talented individuals from around the world we aim to help Sierra Leone reach its full potential.
What is the Summer Project, and where will my funding go?
The aim of the Summer Project is to expand this successful programme to Makeni, Sierra Leone’s third largest city. This is what I will be working on this summer. We need your help to raise £900 to cover the costs of running the Summer Project. The funds raised will go towards volunteer training, support, and accommodation for the duration of the 4 week project, as well as towards supporting the local NGO network in Sierra Leone.
Who are your local partner organisations?
Our partner organizations include Living Earth Foundation, Salone Microfinance Trust, One Girl, AFFORD, Future for Children, Conscience International, and The Craig Bellamy Foundation. They work in micro-finance, enterprise and education, are doing amazing work in-country and benefit from high levels of expertise to improve the efficiency of what they do. With thorough support and coaching from The Collective, consultants work closely with our partners to implement sustainable systems and assist in staff training to ensure their work will continue to be felt well after their departure. For a full list of our Project Partners, please visit The Collective’s website.
And if that isn't enough to convince you...
I will be running in the British 10km Run on 14th July 2013 in London to support The Collective's Summer Project. I am not a natural runner. So even if you aren't moved by the work of The Collective, please find it in you to give generously in support of this effort!