By Abubakarr Harding
In a remarkable collaborative effort aimed at enhancing the quality of life for the Polio community in Grafton, a coalition of four philanthropic organizations has successfully inaugurated a fully functional borehole project within the community. The conglomerate, known as the “Partnership to Serve Humanity Consortium,” comprises Caritas Freetown, Healey Foundation, Lanyi Foundation, and the Tzu Chi Foundation in Taiwan. The significant handover event took place on August 26, 2023, at the Polio Community Center in Grafton, Freetown.
The Programs Manager at the Lanyi Foundation, Joshua H. Vandy, shared insights into the Foundation’s overarching mission. He emphasized their core goal of uplifting the lives of Sierra Leoneans, a mission realized through initiatives dedicated to enhancing living conditions. The borehole project emerged from a pressing need for clean water within the Polio community, a necessity that spurred the Foundation into action.
Vandy recounted the extensive endeavors undertaken to secure funding for the project, involving numerous discussions and negotiations. He acknowledged the challenges faced along the way, including a previous unsuccessful attempt by the Foundation to establish a borehole within the community.
He underscored the partnership’s significance as a heartening example of organizations uniting to alleviate the challenges faced by marginalized communities. The borehole project stands as a symbol of hope, illuminating the path towards a more inclusive and compassionate society where fundamental necessities like clean water are accessible to all.
As the Polio community in Grafton celebrates the arrival of clean water, the “Partnership to Serve Humanity” serves as a testament to the transformative potential of collective action, underscoring the importance of aiding the most vulnerable segments of humanity.
Margaret Bassie, the Tzu Chi Representative for Sierra Leone, addressed the gathering, shedding light on the purpose of the event. She highlighted that the borehole project was designed to provide the Polio community with reliable access to clean water, an essential resource for their daily needs. The partnership’s mission aligns with the goal of supporting Government initiatives and contributing to the Sustainable Development Goal 6 – ensuring water and sanitation availability and sustainability for all.
Bassie emphasized the organization’s commitment to enhancing the lives of differently-abled communities. She emphasized that the partnership had been actively involved with the Polio community for over seven years, supplying vital provisions such as food, blankets, and even constructing sanitary facilities. The newly established borehole stands as a testament to their unwavering dedication.
The Tzu Chi Representative made it clear that their humanitarian endeavors were not merely symbolic but emanated from a genuine desire to empower communities. She stressed that access to clean water and basic necessities was a fundamental human right applicable to every community.
Ibrahim Isaac Kamara, the Chairman of the Polio Challenge Association, conveyed the Polio community’s gratitude for this impactful gesture. He revealed the hardships the community had faced, particularly concerning water scarcity. While the larger Grafton community enjoyed ample water resources, the Polio community faced a vastly different reality, with children undertaking arduous journeys to fetch water, often resulting in injuries and contamination.
Kamara also highlighted the challenges posed by the community’s landscape, which proved particularly difficult for disabled individuals reliant on crutches. He drew attention to the under-equipped school and the pressing need for a multipurpose building project, expressing hope for the generous support of donors.