Sierra Leone

SHGO and Zion Ministries promote education, vocational programming, maternal and infant healthcare, nutrition, rural outreach, and grassroots development in this post-conflict nation. The goal: To decrease some of the world’s highest rates of maternal and infant mortality, while holistically uplifting rural communities.

SHGO’s longest-running and most intensive partnership is in collaboration with Zion Ministries in Bo, Sierra Leone. Founded and directed by spouses Pastor Michael Kanu and Cynthia Kanu, RN, Zion Ministries supports the Bo region and its 17 surrounding rural communities of 10,000+ individuals through economic, educational and vocational, economic, spiritual, and healthcare services. Zion Ministries serves its local communities needs by working to:

  • Provide essential health services, with an emphasis on maternal and child health due to high national maternal and infant mortality rates;
  • Initiate rural health education, trainings, outreach schemes, referrals, and triage;
  • Develop education, training, and treatment for nutrition and feeding;
  • Provide primary, secondary, and vocational education for youth;
  • Enable access to clean water sources and community sanitation;
  • Support local economic development through microloans, microenterprise-development, and sustainability measures;
  • Deliver spiritual support - while continuing to serve all in need, regardless of spiritual beliefs;
  • Foster community development, local autonomy, and indigenous capacity.

SHGO’s lifelong partnership with Zion Ministries is currently focused on the development of a Clinic-School Campus, which centralizes a Nutrition and Feeding Center, Community Meeting Space, Clean Water Well, Primary School, and Maternal-Child Health Clinic on the same rural campus – supported by Staff Living Quarters, Recreational Space, Agriculture, and more. The Clinic-School Campus framework functions to comprehensively serve networks of rural communities which previously lacked access to these basic services. With the Campus at the geographic heart of a vast rural service provision scheme, health, education, and comprehensive community empowerment development is fortified. A pilot campus in the village of Bandawa is in formation stages, with successful preliminary outcomes. Under the Office of the First Lady of Sierra Leone – and with your support – the next step for SHGO’s partnership in Sierra Leone is to replicate a Clinic-School Campus in each region of this West African nation.

The School/Clinic pairing model has been admired and supported by the President and First Lady of Sierra Leone as a model that could potentially address rural access to healthcare and education countrywide. SHGO is in the process of working with the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development to create a rural healthcare and education plan under the direction of the First Lady of Sierra Leone. It is estimated that over 500 women and children will access the clinic each week and the primary school is nearing full capacity. The next phase of the partnership will be developing sustainability measures along with the development of the various structures still underway.

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