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Sierra Leone Chapter



The FARDA “story” dates back to 1992, when the non-profit’s founder started a rural development program called Small Farmers Rehabilitation and Development Project (SFRDP) to seek support for and undertake programs that would enable rural farmers to undertake production practices that would increase output while minimizing costs. But the then raging civil war would cause a shift in the strategies of the SFRDP. In 1998, SFRDP was re-named Friends Reach Us Now (or Friends RUN) to reflect the founder’s desire to raise awareness about the then civil war in Sierra Leone. At that time, the founder was living in Johannesburg, Republic of South Africa, where he was seeking refuge from the war in his native country. With the urge to gather fellow volunteers to serve our ailing communities back home, the founder returned to Sierra Leone in August 2000. Once there, he met with fellow Sierra Leoneans who had been either displaced within the country or seeking refuge across the country’s borders during the country’s eleven years of bloody civil war. The new members, comprising displaced and returning Sierra Leoneans, changed the name Friends RUN to the current name, Friends of Africa Relief and Development Agency (or FARDA). FARDA was formally launched on September 5, 2001 at the Huntingdon Secondary School grounds in Jui, near Freetown.

Through all the changes, one thing has certainly remained unchanged: the mission of the different evolving organizations, from the SFRDP through Friends RUN to FARDA. This mission is what FARDA still commits itself today – to engage and assist in seeking sustainable and compatible solutions to the problems faced by grassroots movements and survivors of the civil war that engulfed Sierra Leone for 11 years, to promote the rights of women and children, and to identify and strive to eliminate the causes of gender inequality in post-war rural Sierra Leone. Members acknowledge that this mission is tough and challenging, and sometimes requires the adoption of a hard and basic lifestyle to accomplish, especially for members and staff on the ground in Sierra Leone.

Our goals

Group of FARDA volunteers