The Child Reintegration Centre was treated to a special visit from their founder, Bishop John Yambasu, who helped the CRC case managers distribute solar powered radios to students. As part of its COVID response, the CRC is providing students with solar powered radios, so they can keep up with government sponsored radio broadcasts during school closures. This is especially critical for students who are slated to take promotional exams to advance to the next level of their education, and these students are receiving the radios first. So far 183 radios have been distributed. The students also received face masks and time tables for the radio programs.
While the developed world has shifted to online learning during the pandemic, this is not an option for the vast majority of Sierra Leoneans, and certainly not for families served by the CRC. By providing children with solar powered radios, even those whose homes lack electricity can listen to the daily education broadcasts.
In case you didn't know, the CRC owes its existence to Bishop Yambasu, who came to the US in 1999 seeking assistance for children orphaned or abandoned in the Sierra Leone civil war. His advocacy led to the launching of the Child Rescue Centre as a street feeding program, and later residential and family care initiative (renamed the Child Reintegration Centre in 2019.)
"I was excited to witness and be part of the radio distribution to the children in the midst of the many challenges students and teachers are facing. It is my hope that the radios will make a positive impact on the quality of results our children will bring at the end of their examinations," Bishop Yambasu said.
The bishop remains closely engaged in the work of the CRC to strengthen vulnerable families and reintegrate children with loving caregivers. You can read about the CRC's beginning here: www.helpingchildrenworldwide.org/our-story
Mercy Hospital contracted the Sierra Leonean company Maklon Limited to supply and install 40 solar panels and all necessary peripherals to provide solar power as a sustainable means of generating electricity to meet the power demands of the hospital.
Maklon completed the installation and carried out two days of testing to confirm that the system is functioning properly, adding two solar panels to accommodate more power for the rainy season. After three days of testing, the system is fully operational and accommodates all computers, lights, the submersive pump, and two air conditioners. With solar power, there will be 24 hours of electricity to power the blood bank, the surgical centre, and all of Mercy's electrical needs.
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