The consultative workshop happened at Siaka Steven Steven Stadium hostel in Freetown, on Tuesday the 11 April 2016. The workshop assembled traditional leaders, religious leaders and key stakeholders across the country.
Head of Programs at the Office of the First Lady , Moses Beckley said since 2007 they had undertook many projects such as the engagement with members of the National ‘Sowei’ Council to make sure that only children above 18 are to be initiated into Bondo society and went through the female circumcision, the reduction of maternal mortality which the office supported the government on, through the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, working with Traditional and Religious leaders during the Ebola epidemic, brought communities together for the promotion of the issues of women and girls and also impacting self esteem and building the confidence of girls through the hosting of the National Girls Camp.
Deputy Minister 1 of the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Madina Rhaman said the Ministry of Health and Sanitation had introduced many mechanism to drastically reduce the rate of maternal mortality, working together with stakeholders of communities adding that the country’s health facility currently had a free health care initiative for children under five, pregnant women and lactating mothers, ambulances that are up and running and community health centers or peripheral health units in every chiefdom.
Representative of the Inter Religious Council Rev. Osman Fornah described his organisation as the largest civil society constituency that had been working closely with the office of the first lady in addressing issues of women and children in the country, as we are enjoying religious tolerance in Sierra Leone, he noted.
In her keynote address at the consultative workshop, First Lady Sia Nyama Koroma commended her partners, including UNFPA, Plan International among others, for what she described as significant support, over the years especially in their thrive to capacitate the women and girls in Sierra Leone.
She said the Human Index report for 2007 never placed Sierra Leone at a better ranking especially on issues of maternal mortality and poverty, and this reason she said led to her office designing all of the projects it had undertaken in supporting the central government.
Participants were divided into groups with activities and projects undertaken by the office of the first lady being assessed, experiences being shared and achievements being talked about also.
Some of the participants when making their assessment on the work of the office of the first lady Sia Nyama Koroma, and what they hope to see when another person occupy’s that office, said they appreciated the effort of the First Lady and called on whosever assumes that office after the 2018 elections to continue the developmental prowess of First Lady Sia Nyama Koroma.