SOS Children’s Villages The Gambia would like to celebrate individuals and humanitarian workers like Bakary Sawaneh who support children, young people and staff especially during the Covid-19 period.
A tiny West African State with over one million inhabitants, The Gambia is known as the smiling coast of Africa. In 2019 after the announcement of the COVID-19 pandemic, things quickly turned around disrupting the lives, operations and livelihoods of the average Gambians.
Bakary Sawaneh an SOS Youth Leader in Bakoteh has been a witness to this crisis. Bakary has worked as a Youth Leader for 8 years supporting children and young people at SOS Children’s Villages Bakoteh.
Since 2020, Bakary has been supporting and volunteering at the temporary isolation center set up by SOS Children’s Villages The Gambia providing psychosocial support to the SOS Mothers, Family Assistants, and Young People who contracted COVID-19.
On his motorbike, dressed in PPE gear, Bakary always visits the SOS Mothers, Family Assistants, and Young People who had contracted COVID-19 at the temporary isolation center in Bakoteh to make sure they are doing fine and keeping safe .
“In late 2020 when international borders were closed due to COVID-19 Pandemic, I had to escort a young person who needed medical attention to another country, and with the support of management, we had to devise a way out to make sure the young person is treated whilst adhering to health regulations”
However, he says, “The heavy downpour of rain, windstorm, and flooding has made his work a little bit challenging during those difficult times” and call on all to take action to reduce the impact of climate change.
As for Bakary, “ working for vulnerable children and young people is something I love doing and passion for me, every child is unique in his or her way, with the right support and orientation, we can bring out the best in them”.