Binta’s Story – A leading lady

Y Care International held a BBC Radio 4 Appeal in April 2018 that was voiced by Lord Paul Boateng and raised £9,118. 

Working with our partners on the ground – YMCA Sierra Leone and CODOHSAPA, Centre of Dialogue on Human Settlement and Poverty Alleviation  – we have supported young women like Binta get into work and out of poverty in Freetown, Sierra Leone. Here is her story:

My name is Binta. I used to be the leader of the ladies in a gangster group but now, I thank God, because I am a changed person.  The YMCA came into this community and met me when I was a wild cat; I fought, went to jail, was arrested, and slept in police stations. I had a ghetto where I was selling marijuana. So I have lived all kinds of lifestyles. I thank God the YMCA came into my life now.  I was passing by one day when my uncle told me that the YMCA has come to the community to give young people jobs. So I wrote my name down for the jobs that they were giving to people; after that I went for catering training. The training was hard for me because I was used to smoking, drinking, going to clubs, fighting in the streets, and as a leader of a gang it was not easy for me in the community. I found it difficult, but my uncle encouraged me to get something out of the training.

When I completed the training, I became chair lady of the community as a whole. Then I became Sierra Leone People’s Party Young Generation Leader (YG SLPP) for this community.  I have become a leader in this country, I now talk to people and they listen to me.  Now I work and earn money because of the skills training I received.”

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