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        Sow Seeds of Yoga in Sierra Leone - Scholarships for Sulcut, Meeky and Francess


        Training in Yoga for Children

         


        Support Sulcut, Meeky and Francess to Spread the Light of Yoga


        Purpose: We wish to create a scholarship fund to support Sulcut, Meeky and Francess - three Sierra Leonean poets, singers, song-writers whose home has been on the streets over many years - in undertaking an intensive 18-month yoga training. They will pay their scholarships forward by teaching yoga to others, helping to heal the scars of trauma in children and vulnerable people in their communities.  


        Sierra Leone - Yoga to Build a Better World

        In this classical yoga training, participants undergo a process of self-transformation, then support the healing of their communities.The training focuses on sharing tools that promote a peaceful and gradual social and environmental change, generating new habits that help improve the mental and physical health of the people of Sierra Leone. This way it creates better living conditions in the present and possibilities to build a fair and decent future.

        Classical Yoga training

         

        The project will impact more than 1,000 children and 300 vulnerable adults during 2022. As Sulcut, Meeky and Francess can testify, children in Sierra Leone face severe obstacles to their development. Most pressingly, children are at risk of child labour, violence and sexual abuse, child marriage and adolescent pregnancy. These risks, combined with systemic poverty, poor health conditions and lack of access to education, endanger all children in the country. 


        The stories of Sulcut, Meeky and Francess

        One of twelve children, Sulcut (Sulaiman Bangura) spent his childhood in poverty and his youth in refugee camps in Guinea. On his return to Sierra Leone he struggled for survival on the street. He is a poet and song-writer. Meeky (Michael Samuel Kamara), a singer-songwriter, also made the street his home in his teens. Like Sulcut, he has learned a range of skills, including sound engineering, at WAYout which offers training in media, music and the arts to disadvantaged young people in Sierra Leone. WAYout has also been a haven for Francess (Francess Kamara), who has participated in photography, editing and poetry workshops there. A triplet, Francess was turned out of her uncle’s home at the age of eight on account of superstition, when her two other sisters died. 


        Michael Samuel Kamara a.k.a. Meeky Star


        Always on the edge of survival, Sulcut, Meeky and Francess' sources of income have dried up with the Covid-19 pandemic. Yet despite their own severely reduced circumstances, all three continue to volunteer to spread healing and joy through poetry, dance, music - and now yoga - to patients in a psychiatric ward, at a women’s prison, in schools, among orphans and other children in need. 


        Scholarships 

        We would hope to provide a stipend of £50 per month to Sulcut, Meeky and Francess throughout the 18 months of training. Our overall goal for the crowdfunding campaign is £2.700. 


        If you are feeling particularly generous and we manage to collect more money than needed for these three scholarships, we will distribute the additional funds to others taking part in the training who have financial needs. Thank you for helping us sow the seeds of yoga far and wide, to build a better world. 


        The Sierra Leone - Yoga to Build a Better World initiative is led by Fundación YOGA PURA VIDA, in partnership with Tools for Inner Peace. 




        Sulaiman Bangura a.k.a. Sulcut

         

        I Was Born in Poverty

        by Sulaiman Bangura a.k.a. Sulcut


        I remember when we used to sleep without food

        No expectation of tomorrow

        We only wished to see another day

        We were poor and unsafe

        Living on bush animals and plants

        And curing our diseases with bush medicines


        We lived and walked through the bush

        Looking fearfully at the hills and trees

        Walking miles every day just in search of the basics of life

        We were like roses under a black rock

        Locked in darkness


        I remember the old building made of branches

        With a roof of golden grasses

        Some days we had to endure

        The frenzied weather of the mountains

        Mist floated through the building

        And we felt the cold within our bones

        Brothers and sisters lay in rows on the cold ground

        Sharing an old faded blanket


        We were living a mysterious rustic life without luxuries

        The black soap we used was made by our grandma

        We used sticks to clean our teeth

        To be poor is not a crime, but poverty is an ugly relative


         

        I Must Lose with You

        by Meeky Star (Michael Samuel Kamara)




        The Woman in Me

        by Francess Kamara


        In me there is a great woman

        This woman makes a difference

        Can make changes in my life

        Day and night she gets stronger


        This great woman in me

        Makes me fight for what I want

        believes in hustling hard

        Makes me do astonishing things


        Sometimes unbelievable

        To everyone even me

        Sometimes I wonder in slumber

        What kind of woman I am


        This woman can never change,

        Can make perfect things occur

        This woman can never give up

        can never be lost or done with


        The growth of her power in me

        Makes me fight to victory

        Ready to face the whole world

        Show the power of the woman in me



        Francess Kamara