Back to School: A Life-Changing Education in Sierra Leone

Editor’s Note: Sierra Leone’s capital city of Freetown has been hit by extreme flooding, killing over 500 people and displacing hundreds more. Please help our Honoree Miriam Mason-Sesay and her team at EducAid as they provide urgently-needed shelter and supplies. Make a donation here. Despite the flooding, EducAid is determined to continue bringing high-quality education to Sierra Leone’s children. Read the story below to meet one of those children and find out how you can help.

educaid sierra leone
An EducAid school in Sierra Leone.

Alfred was born in a small village in Sierra Leone, but he doesn’t know his birthday; his parents never got the chance to learn how to read or write, so they didn’t record the day that Alfred was born.

Alfred in his village.

His mother died in childbirth, so Alfred lives with his father, who doesn’t make enough income to pay the fees required to keep his son in school. Soon, Alfred was asked to leave his school because his family couldn’t afford it. With nothing to do except roam the streets of his village, he started getting into trouble.

Then the Ebola outbreak hit. Within one week, 28 people in Alfred’s village had died. The entire village was quarantined; no one could leave, not even to buy food. Soon, Alfred had contracted the virus, and all he could do was lie down in his house while his family wept around him. He asked his father to call the hospital, but his father was illiterate, so was afraid to use the phone. Fortunately, an ambulance drove by, and Alfred was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Students read inside of an EducAid school.

One long month later, Alfred had recovered from the virus. But with a village ravaged by the virus and a family who still barely made enough to get by, Alfred still had no way of attending school.

That’s when Alfred found EducAid, a network of schools started by Honoree Miriam Mason-Sesay. Thanks to EducAid and our funding, Alfred started school last year. Through lots of hard work and dedication, Alfred is now one of the top students in his class, and just completed his basic education certificate. Who knows what he will accomplish next?

You can unlock the future for a child like Alfred by funding their first month of school. Learn more >>

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