#National News

YPWB supports displaced families, hosts with rice

May 6, 2022, 12:27 PM | Article By: Cherno Omar Bobb

Young People Without Borders (YPWB) with support and sponsorship from American Jewish Wirld Service (AJWS) recently supported 100 displaced families and their hosts in Bullock and Sibanor each with 50kg bags of rice.

The organisation in Bullock distributed 32 bags rice to 32 families and 68 bags of 50kg of rice to 68 families in Sibanor.

It could be recalled that in January 2022, exchange of gun battle erupted between Senegalese soldiers serving the ECOWAS military intervention in The Gambia (ECOMIG) and the MFDC separatists.

The violence led to the death of two Senegalese ECOMIG soldiers, with seven other soldiers being captured by the MFDC separatists. This unfortunate tension further resulted in the forceful displacements of a total of 2,464 people, comprising 2,204 internally displaced people (IDP) and 260 people from host families.

Less than two months later (in March 2022) the Armed Forces of Senegal launched an offensive in Cassamance against the MFDC. The resurgence of violence prompted wide population movement on both sides of the border.

Senegalese and Gambians alike fled the area of the conflict and made their way to villages along the Trans-Gambia Highway and beyond. Some of those who fled are women, children and the elderly, as most men, who initially were unwilling to leave their property and livelihoods behind, have now vacated the affected area.

Speaking at the handing over in Sibanor, Kalifa Kanteh, chairperson and founder of Young People Without Borders said the assistance targeted three affected groups which include displaced refugees from Cassamance, Gambians on border line villages that have moved to villages on the highway as well as host families.

Mr Kanteh pointed out that when fleeing due to conflict, one is hardly prepared and tends to leave a lot of their valuables behind.

He described food as a basic need which no one can go without, saying this was why they thought it important to consult the National Disaster Management Agency to identify families for them.

He thanked Coscpac for their partnership, American Jewish World Service (AJWS) for their support and sponsorship, NDMA for their coordination and the Young People Without Borders team.

Isatou Badjie, a host and beneficiary from the assistance thanked donors for their generosity, saying the food package will complement their survival.

Ansumana Bojang, Bullock alkalo said it is not anyone’s wish to flee their home for another place and prayed that the conflict is resolved soon for displaced families to return to their homes.