SALONE WEDDINGS?or

Chelma’s Design Capturing the heart of Sierra Leoneans

Meet miss Mahawa Rachel Lahai. A graduate from Njala University with B.Sc Hons Business and information technology. She is an accountant in one of Sierra Leone’s leading accounting and audit firms. She is the CEO of chelma’s Design, a go-getter, and risk-taker.

Chelma’s design is made in Sierra Leone and an African inspired fashion brand that is into; kids’ clothing, bridal accessories, African accessories for both sexes and home decor. Chelma is a combination of two names; the last four letters of Rachel and the first two letters of Mahawa. The idea of Chelma started from her desire to participate in the AYV Annual Miss University Contest. Her friend was the reigning queen in 2012/2013 and she wanted her to enter the competition the following year 2013. So she went ahead and bought the form, filled it and returned it. After submitting her application form for the competition, she was discussing and sharing her excitement with her friend when her friend told her that beyond the catwalk, which she will coach her, she will need to prepare to display a particular talent as part of the competition. The statement baffled her and she replied, I don’t have a talent. Her friend then told her you better be looking out there for something you are good at and will display for the audience.

One day she was watching Ebony life TV on DSTV when a particular program came on and a young entrepreneur was teaching viewers how to make the button necklace DIY. She was so caught up into it and was inspired by it. She instantly called her friend and tell her that she had discovered her talent. The next day she used her lunch money to buy some of the items she needed to make the necklace to try out what she learned on TV. The finished product was great and she wore it to campus. She received so many compliments and reviews and got her friends and colleagues requesting she made the same for them. She started doing research, going to YouTube and making different types of neckpieces. For some personal reasons, she did not take part in the Miss University Pageantry as planned. But that process changed her life forever. She discovered she can work with her hands and that process has led her to where she is today.

She took a break from the craftwork in 2014, as she wanted to focus on her academics. Just after her final exams, then came the Ebola and she was at home doing nothing. She started her craftwork again producing for families, friends and the general public. She finally registered it as a business in March 2015, and immediately started expanding her accessory line, making different earrings. At that point, she made up her mind to add one new item to her collection every year. The need to move into bridal accessories came when she wanted to make some of the items for her aunts’ wedding. She was her first client. ‘Taking a look at the pictures now, I realize I have evolved and grow a lot’, she said. Since then she has done over twenty weddings so far.

She also has an eight to five job, fully employed with a leading accounting firm in town. Her craftwork is mostly done at night after her full-time job and mostly on weekends.

She has a training school for people within the Goderich community, where she trains young people the bulk of whom are women. Last year, she had a fundraising dinner which was organise for the sole purpose of raising funds to acquire a piece of land where she will erect a building that will serve as an Art and Craft training center, where they will train deprived women in the community (especially those who are involved in the hard labor of breaking and selling granite as monies from this source goes right back into their hospital bills) so that they can be empowered to start their own business.

Chelma designs are into the following she said; kids’ clothing, teddy bears, hair broaches and accessories, Ankara peplum belts, earrings, and necklaces. Wedding accessories; bridal bouquet, bridesmaids bouquet, a bouquet for flower girls, clothing for flower girls and page boys, bow ties and neckties. Home decorations such as Ankara wall hangings and flower stands.

She was a recipient of a grant from UN women. A grant given to startups and business enterprises owned by women. She was going through her Facebook one day when she saw this flier about the grant available for women, so she applied and was shortlisted. After rigorous selection processes which included a verification visit from the organization, she was approved for the grant. ‘I had to go through several weeks of training and coaching, where we were taught how to prepare a sustainable business plan and how to do our financials’ Miss Lahai proudly stated. She said she is extremely grateful to God and to the UN Women for the grant.

She used the grant to expand her business to get more sewing machines, had increased her number of trainees and have employed three staff. One that handles the Finance part of her business, one for public relations and the other for marketing and sales. ‘With the grant, we were also able to get more materials and tools to make our work easy and so far we have been doing well and we are grateful for the opportunity’, she stated.

Miss Lahai hopes in the next five years Chelma would be a known brand locally and internationally with branches in the neighboring countries. She would want to be involved in exporting her brands. She had tried exporting before but was too expensive and not favorable for a young business like hers. She would also want to open her physical store downtown in the central business district area and an online store. ‘I would want to grow my team of designers, seamstresses and other skilled people needed’ she stated.

Ms. Lahai further stated that one of her greatest satisfaction and pleasure is to put smiles on the faces of her customers as a sign of appreciation and satisfaction for the services they receive from us. ‘Nothing beats that feeling’ she said.

Her advice is for young Sierra Leoneans to believe in themselves and their abilities. They should not allow anything to stand in their way in their pursuit of self-development and empowerment. Nobody is too young or too old to dream, to start their own business, or to be rich. So they should believe in themselves and know that failure is part of the process. If they fail the first time they should see it as a learning curve and basis to acquire experience; they should dust themselves and get back up and move on with it. They should be passionate about whatever they want to do as that is what will push them if they hit a wall along the way. Young people should be with likeminded friends that will push them and give them the support system they might need one way or the other. Finally, they should always ask themselves this question, what’s next?

#itisthesalonewayornowayatall#

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Glam Diva Beauty-💅👄👰💆‍♀️💇‍♀️ Sierra Leone Beauty Industry

We are looking at Sierra Leone’s beauty Industry this week. A beautiful, hard-working, young woman is making tremendous strides within the beauty business. She is an epitome of Black girl magic and a promoter of what’s the BBB is about; beautiful, brilliant and business-minded. I know you are already intrigued, so let us just delve right into it. For the ultimate bridal makeovers and beauty quick fixes please contact her on Facebook and Instagram @ GlamDivaBeauty19, call or send her SMS on this number +23275012258. You can also send her an email- glamdivabeauty19@gmail.com

Readers please meet, Adama Koroma, the first of four children. She lost her mother three years ago. She has not let the passing of her mother deter her from pursuing her dreams. Her father has been a great pillar of support for her. She attended the Annie Walsh Memorial School where she sat to the wassce and proceeded to Njala University where she attained a B.Sc degree in Public Health. She also has a Master’s degree in Public health from the Southeast University, Nanjing, China. She is owner of the GLAM DIVA BEAUTY which is a beauty shop that is fully registered with all appropriate bodies. One of the few beauty shops at the very east of Freetown. Glam Diva Beauty can be found At Hastings Junction, Main Waterloo Highway close to the toll gate.

Adama Koroma Owner of Glam Diva Beauty

She offers a range of services at Glam Diva Beauty; Manicure and Pedicure, Bridal Make up; For both traditional and white weddings, casual makeovers for event and parties, Hair services are also available as they do braids, hair extensions, weave/ weft, and wigs. She also offers treatment and styling for those with natural hair.

Her work; traditional bridal look

She said, the leap from her field of study to the beauty industry came out of the need to have her own business and be her own boss and at the same time help others feel beautiful about themselves. Her business provides job for young people, particularly young women who want to make a career in the beauty industry. She says her job as a beautician helps to lift the spirits of others, make them feel good about themselves, gain confidence and feel comfortable in their skin. Beauty enhancement is very important nowadays not just in Sierra Leone but the world at large. “If i can help people feel good about themselves, provide jobs and empower others and still be able to make money, nothing can beat that feeling”, a glamorous Miss Koroma stated.

The inside look of Glam Diva Beauty

Her biggest achievement, she said, has been providing jobs for others. She had been able to employ four people to be specific. That has been possible because she dares to dream and make it a reality. She is building her clientele base through recommendations and referrals and has been getting a lot of positive reviews and feedbacks which she has been using constantly to upgrade herself. She explained, that in this industry one should never be complacent. Like fashion, beauty feeds on trends and trend feeds on time. So, as someone with that knowledge, she constantly upgrades herself and her products with what’s trending in the beauty industry. Ms. Koroma emphasizes that her contribution to national development gives her satisfactiion.

The Mani and Pedi Section

One of her major challenges has been getting clients and maintaining them. She is extremely grateful to her family, friends, and acquaintances for helping spread the word about her business and location. She has also been using social media to let people know of her work as it is one of the cheapest forms of advertising. She tries to get her clients to involve in discussions of fashion and trends in other for her to know what their thoughts and expectations are.

Boss Lady Adama Koroma

Another challenge is competition, even though the beauty industry is a young one in Sierra Leone. The competition is intensive, as trends are changing every day. She needs to constantly be on her A-game all the time, to update herself and her store with the latest nails and nail products, hair and hair products. Hiring beauticians with thorough experience of beauty and the industry, as their service will have a great impact on her business.

Traditional Wedding makeover

Finally, the maintenance of her shop. She knows no one would want to be in an unhygienic place to get a beauty service. So, her shop has to be attractive all the time for her clientele from her lighting’s, chairs and fresh diffusers to create a fresh and welcoming ambiance for her customer. Teaching her employees and training them on the importance of great customer service. However, the real issues have been getting a balance between the aforementioned challenges and making a decent profit. So far, she has been coping.

She was asked to tell readers one secret about herself. She replied, I don’t know if this is a secret but I am a very ambitious and competitive person, but the secret is I don’t hate on others for their progress. What I do is challenge myself to be the better version of myself. Seeing the amazing work of others keep me on my toes, although I know my limits. I admire hard-working people and that has been the fuel that pushes me to go get what I want and to achieve great things.

The Hair section

Her advice to fellow youth is that they should be aware that to start anything good is not easy. There are so many challenges that are holding young people back, but they should know these challenges are inevitable. They should accept these obstacles and work to surpass them and never give up. Whatever little corner they find themselves, they should always know that they as youth have the capacity to be the change they want to see in Sierra Leone. Be their own cheerleader, motivation, and competition. Never settle for less but always thrive to be the best of themselves. Life is full of amazing opportunities, they just have to tap into their potential and not let other people’s opinion limit their ideas and aspirations. Whatever they admire in others they have the capability to be and do themselves. Finally, nothing good comes easy, so they should trust the process of hard work and growth to get to their desired destinations.

The outer look of her shop at Hasting Junction main Waterloo Highway not too far from the Hasting toll Gate.

So, that’s it readers, Sierra Leone you heard it here first. Our aim of doing this is to bring these risk-takers to the knowledge of Sierra Leoneans and to motivate others out here to keep on pushing. It’s never too late to start something beneficial for yourself and your communities. While we are at it please let’s not forget to patronize this young woman who has done tremendously well and is still doing a lot to keep her business alive. If you are in the east part of Freetown, the wedding season is just around the corner. Book now and secure a place so you won’t get disappointed. If you need that quick makeover for parties and event just stop by her shop and support her you won’t regret it. ✌@dasalonetiti

#IttheSalonewayornowayatall#

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Sonnisha’s 🍴 Kitchen, Entrepreneurs Within the Food Industry

I am super excited😀😊readers, and can you guess why? yes I know, I know, I like food but I am not a foodie. I am thrilled because this is my first food blog post. So, this week I am going to serve you this very young student entrepreneur on a platter. Get all your cutleries ready. Now let’s dig into it. Bon appetite!

Sonnisha’s Kitchen

Let’s get serious now, can we? enough with the distractions. You all meet our very own young student entrepreneur, Miss Sonia Haja Koroma. Owner and Founder of Sonisha’s Kitchen. A law student at the Fourah Bay College, currently in year three. Oooo yes! aspiring lawyers can cook too.

Miss Sonia Haja Koroma Owner of Sonisha’s Kitchen

She said, as a kid, she hated the kitchen, she thought then it was too much of a work. Washing all those plates and pot, the sweeping and cleaning to tidy up the kitchen after cooking was too much for her. That was her image and understanding of the kitchen. Children in Africa can relate. But as she grew up in her teenage years, her interest in food increases and the same for her love for the kitchen.

Crunchy Fish Fingers by Sonnisha’s Kitchen

She is a foodie and her passion for cooking started with her trying out various recipes for herself. She then started cooking for family and friends and they were intrigued by how good and tasty her food was. She got a lot of compliments and feedback from people of all ages and different background. That’s when she started paying close attention to this talent of hers and the thought of doing it commercially was born.

Crispy /Crunchy Chicken wings by Sonnisha’s Kitchen

She said cooking has helped her a lot and has open a lot of opportunities for her, as she cooks and caters for a lot of people and events. She constantly tries to upgrade herself by learning new recipes on and offline, by trying out new ways to make old foods. Cooking helps her financially, and has provided her with lunch money, transportation to and fro college and other basic needs she has as a young woman. Cooking keeps her going, she said.

Slice Sausages with tomato sauce by Sonnisha’s Kitchen

I asked her, how she is able to balance her school work and her catering business? She smiled and replied; previously if by any chance my catering work collides with my exams or any other important academic programs I won’t take the job. That is no longer a problem as I have a very hard-working assistant, who is able to hold the fort in my absence. As a result, I am now able to balance my academics and catering services more efficiently.

Sandwich by yours truly

Her advice to her fellow students is that they should not limit themselves to just academics. There are skills they could be talented with and they should not be afraid to explore those skills. To fellow young Sierra Leoneans, she said: “let not be mentally or physically lazy, let our mind be as active as possible, we can do anything we set our hearts to do”. There are so many other things we could do, as young people to uplift our selves economically and it starts with our minds.

Vegetable bulgur with plantain

She needs all the support she can get from us Sierra Leoneans. She really cooks well, does nice foods and her prices are very affordable. For inquiries about her services please contact her on Facebook@Sonia Haja Koroma, or you can call her on the following numbers; +23278607275/ +23299381090. ✌peace @dasalonetiti

Miss Koroma

#Itsdasalonewayornowayatall#

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SaLone Fashionistas Eid Al-Adha💃

When you see the average Sierra Leonean, what comes to mind? I know, I know;

Strong

Confident

Industrious

Beautiful,

Sophistication

Style

Simplicity

Friendliness

Gorgeousness

Calculated

Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. This is just a sneak peek into what’s popping in the Salone Fashion scene in terms of Ankara (Africana). Take a look at these beautiful people below from Sierra Leone, and tell me your perception of what our fashion is? By the way, Kaftan is back, it is the ish and it’s trending presently in Freetown. These styles you can get from the beautiful stores around town. Courtesy of Mumini Fashion Empire, Rainbow boutique and Zara Designs, your personal designers or tailor wey u trust😂😜😊

Stylish and beautiful Jebbeh Kamara
The beautiful Adama Shaw
Adama Kargbo Owner of glam diva beauty
The beautiful Hassanatu Maju Barrie
CEO Amy Marketing Agency and her better
half
Gorgeous
Mrs. Jaka Mansaray
Shaw baby
Kaftan from Rainbow Boutique
Latifa Isatu Kargbo wearing Zara designs
Mrs Hassanatu Barrie
Mrs. Lilian Jalloh
Beautiful Kaftan from a beautiful damsel
CEO Mumini Fashion Empire
MFE “Dress Well my Friends”
The Black Queen
“Dress well my friends” By Mumini Fashion Empire
X-Project
Gorgeousness in a Kaftan
Dasalonetiti-Rahyma
The beautiful Sophisticated Makalay
Mariam and her Uncle
Beautiful Salma Bah
The gorgeous Hannah and her Mini Dija
Mrs. Kadiatu Jalloh
Kaftan From Rainbow Fashion
Dasalone titi Rahyma
Miss Kamara and her Cute niece
Beautiful Zainab Tholley
Beautiful Bella of Bella Couture
Aunty Sia Waheed
The gorgeous Mrs. Angella Swaray
Beautiful Mrs. Salamatu Kamara Smith
Mrs Jalloh
She is beautiful
Ms. Pretty Zaizu Mansaray
Mr. Sulaiman Kabba Koroma & the beautiful Adama Shaw after Eid
Gorgeous
Melanated Queen Arlene
Salma Bah
Pretty black queen
Melanie dripping queen in her Leppie
Salamatu Smith

Baby Shaw
Latifa Isatu Kargbo and Friend in Zara designs

Beauty and Modesty are the Keyword here. Hope you all enjoy this and thanks to everyone that graced this episode✌peace out@dasalonetiti

#itsdasalonewayornowayatall#

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One of Sierra Leone Young Vibrant Female Entrepreneurs

This week we have the pleasure of interviewing a young woman, who is doing incredibly well in the lives of so many children, while she continues to change the narrative of women can’t do it all. She is no less a person but our very own Kaata Minah, owner of JNAP Ventures, a strong feminist and a champion for gender equality…she said, of course, women can do it and they do it better. Sit, relax, enjoy and be inspired as you read along. For inquiries about all her programs please contact her on +23230218336 or the following social media handles; JNAP Ventures @facebook, twitter and on Instagram

Kaata Minah Owner of JNAP Ventures.

Dasalonetiti-Rahyma: Please tell readers about yourself

Katta Minah: I am Kaata Minah, a graduate of Fourah Bay College. I have a degree BA (Hons) in political science. I am a wife and a mother to an incredible four-year-old daughter.

Party planning and coordination

Dasalonetiti_Rahyma: You study political science why entrepreneurship and why kids in particular?

Kaata Minah: So JNAP Ventures started about three years ago and we started with our holiday activities. Basically, JNAP ventures we are engaged in providing extracurricular activities for children. We are also into party planning and coordination. JNAP Ventures was born because I believe there are so many things kids can do beyond their conventional academic course of study. I noticed most kids only have their heads in their school books and most often because there are limited activities in Sierra Leone that kids could be engaged in; things they have an interest in or are passionate about which they could possibly do in the future. For me, I wanted my child to have all of that so she could be well-grounded in different areas including academics. Yeah, so that’s how JNAP came about. We started initially with just the holiday activities that we do every year when schools are closed. We do different activities from cooking, sewing, karate, dancing, swimming, excursions; for them to see historical sites and relics, keep them occupy and to also ensure they learn something from the experience.

Extra activities to keep the kids active and alert

Dasalonetiti-Rahyma: How is it for you as a wife, mother, nine to five employee and a business owner?

Kaata Minah: Well running JNAP has not been easy. My husband and my sister had been my backbones in running the business. I handle the finance and administrative aspect of the business through them and we make decisions together. They are basically the brains behind everything. I have also managed to put together an incredible team. I have had the same people as staff for the past two years or thereabout. Some had been with me from the very start, they’ve given me all the support I could need. When we started, there were three caregivers; Agnes, Veronica, and Aminata they started the whole holiday activities. It’s just this year they’ve all gotten full employment someplace else, and they cannot be part of us. They had been very good with us and had helped structured our programs. Currently, I have Edwarda, who has been with me for a year, she has been amazing. She basically helped me run everything since I have a full time nine to five job.

Baking class

Dasalonetiti-Rahyma: How do you scale through? We all know to joggle all this, is not an easy thing.

Kaata Minah: As a wife, a mother, a full-time employee, and a purposeful businesswoman, I would like to say it has been very challenging and had also been fun. The support I have or my support system has been incredible. It just makes it a whole lot easier for me. I have my Parents that are wonderful and help a lot with our daughter. My husband also understands that I am doing the things I love to do, so he supports me anyway he could. My awesome sister has also been good and one of my strongest support system. I think the support system for me, is the reason why I am able to do all the things I’m doing. The support system makes it very easy for me to do what I want to do.

Karate class

Dasalonetiti-Rahyma: What has been your biggest achievements?

Kaata Minah: I would say my biggest achievement so far has been establishing my business. It has not been easy for the past three years; trying to get a clientele base, to create awareness about our business, and literally trying to get parents to know the importance of these extra-curricula activities. Now I can gladly say we have like a fair exposure in terms of the business. We have been doing the holiday activities for the past three years and I can proudly say the client we have now, know us for this and now they call to ask about all our programs. There are some clients who had been with us for the past three years, each year they send their children to be part of our holiday activities for which we are grateful. We started our games festival last year and we will be having it for the second time this year, as parents are excited and are asking we do it twice in a year. But I always tell them, we are taking it slowly, getting to know our markets, our strengths, and weaknesses and to further work on our weaknesses. We’ve managed to build a strong relationship of trust amongst our client base on the fact that, when it comes to their kid’s, their wellbeing is our utmost priority. For party events, it is not just about decorations for us. We plan with the parents, help them source things, we help them get vendors for different things that we cannot provide. So we basically taking the stress off our clients by doing everything for them whilst they get to relax, free their minds and enjoy the rest of the event. The party planning is another aspect, that people are mostly reaching out for nowadays. In all this, so far, I will say my biggest achievement would be establishing JNAP Ventures.

Kids doing the barbecue

Dasalonetiti-Rahyma: Tell readers about some of your challenges.

Kaata Minah: I would say some of the challenges had been the constant increase in prices of things. Things are really expensive and some of the things we use such as party supplies and essentials are not even in the country so that means we have to outsource them. For us, our business is for the middle-class Sierra Leoneans. So, we are very considerate in pricing and charging our client bearing in mind the economic status of our clientele. As we all know the status of the economy right now is not pleasing and the fact that prices of things are constantly on the rise is very alarming. Our biggest challenge had been finding that balance between being reasonable and actually making a profit. Apart from making a profit, another challenge has been the process of delivering quality and giving our customers value for their money. This means going for quality items; that means buying things with prices a little bit on the high side, which further means a price increase for your customers. So, finding a balance in all this has been challenging.

Games Festival

Dasalonetiti-Rahyma: Your advice to other women who think women can’t do it all.

Kaata Minah: My advice to other women with the thought or idea that a woman cannot do it all. I think that statement in itself is flawed and they need to get out of their heads. I think every human once you are determined to do something you will be able to do it. You just have to be passionate about it and pursue your dreams and just know there is no success without hard work. Whether you are a man or a woman you have to push, you have to work hard and you have to continue pushing to achieve what you want. I believe we all could do it.

Kids Learning how to wrap their exercise books with ankara

Dasalonetiti-Rahyma: Your general advice to the youth of this our beloved Nation Sierra Leone.

Kaata Minah: My advice to the youth of Sierra Leone generally would be; first of all you have to be determined to do the things you love to do. You also have to realize that in achieving certain things you have to think out of the box. Don’t just confine yourself and your thoughts to the traditional ideas or what people think. So, for instance, if you want to start a business, you need money to start such business, right? So hold on to your nine to five and save towards your goal. Don’t leave your job, because if you do, how would you raise money to start your business? As we all know financial institutions don’t favor startups in this country. I also want them to know that they should have their priorities in order. It’s okay to have fun! it’s okay to work hard you know. Just get a balance and get your priorities straight in life.

Kids having lunch

So here, you have it, readers. I hope we have been inspired by this strong hardworking woman. We all can do it irrespective of our gender. If Salone should go forward then we as citizens have to wake up and take the wheels of the economy and the country. It all starts with our mindset and thought process. Peace out ✌ and long live Mama Salone

Party coordination

#Itsthesalonewayornowayatall#

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Breastfeeding Week and the myths surrounding it in Sierra Leone

As we celebrate International breastfeeding week. I know the percentage of women who don’t breastfeed in this country is small, but notwithstanding we still need to create more awareness of the importance of exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months in the child’s life. Women in this country take pride in breastfeeding their children. Some women breastfeed for more than eighteen to twenty-four months. Our problems are how nutritious are these breastmilk for the development of the infant? Since most women in Sierra Leone do not have access to a well- balanced diet, this might be the reason for the high malnutrition rate in Sierra Leone. But this is a story for another day. Now let’s debunk some of this myth

Suckling mothers are been educated about the importance of exclusively breastfeeding for the first six months in Port Loko

Myth 1. The idea that too much breastfeeding can make a child dumb. “You go make dis Pekin fool oooo” “e go turn efulefu” they will tell you. This is totally false and a myth as this has never been proven scientifically by research as there is no correlation between this two, that too much breastmilk can make an infant dumb. This sometimes can scare the mothers and some will listen and stop breastfeeding instantly.

Myth 2. That having sex with another man different from your husband can affect the child and causes Malnourishment or as we called it in Sierra Leone “Bahnfa d Pekin”. This is totally wrong some men had divorced their wives base on these assumptions. I am not promoting promiscuity in any way, but this idea is totally untrue. Malnourishment or diarrhea of the baby might happen because the mother is not eating a balanced diet or might be eating food that is totally affecting the baby bowel but the lack of awareness in our societies had led to many homes been destroyed or women stigmatized.

Myth 3. That having sex with your husband can contaminate the breast milk for the baby. Young mothers, please ignore this as there is no connection between the virgina and the breasts. Breast milk is determined by what you eat as a suckling mother and how you eat them. You can still be breastfeeding and having a great sex life.

Myth 4. Cassava leaf can bring out the milk. Our people will give nothing to a new mother but cassava saying ” na for d Bobi wata” its for the breastmilk. Cassava leaf is just a vegetable. Which when cooked with other ingredients can be very tasty but it cannot directly increase the flow of the mother’s milk.

Myth 5. That if you are breastfeeding and sexually active you can’t get pregnant, This is not true my fellow women if you are a suckling mother and you are sexually active but do not want to get pregnant again so soon practice safe sex, use condoms or other family planning method. Otherwise, there is no guarantee you won’t get pregnant again.

Myth 6. That only starchy foods are good for suckling mothers. Sierra Leoneans everybody needs a balanced diet especially suckling mothers as they need all the nutrients for their babies development.

Myth 7. If a suckling mom is sick she should not breastfeed. This is totally untrue, you can be sick and still breastfeed as long as you are able to eat you can breastfeed. But take note; always informed your physician that you are a suckling mom to keep him/her in the know, and this will determine the type of medicine he or she will prescribe for you and the dosage. This can be helpful sometimes as the antibodies your system makes will be pass on to your baby, which will also be good for the development of their immune system. Some of the things that can affect the baby are;

1. Chemical characteristic of the drugs

2. Amount of milk the baby consumes at the time.

3. The time period between the moment the drug was taken and the time of the feeding.

But there are specific drugs as suckling mother you should avoid. These areas are as follows; hard drugs, alcohol, and marijuana. Though some type of cannabis is a clinically active substance. The negative side effects of taking these drugs can not be overemphasized. Drug use is on the increase and the same is true for women taking these drugs and alcohol. As mothers or suckling mothers our first priority is to take care of our babies and to make sure they grow healthy and watching what we eat, drink or smoke for six months is a little sacrifice we can pay to see them grow up strong.

Happy International Breastfeeding week my fellow women in SaLone@dasalonetiti

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Young Entrepreneurs From Sierra Leone

Today we have the chance to meet Mohamed Junior Sesay. A young man born and raised in Sierra Leone. He attended Services Secondary School where he took the Wassce and proceeded to Milton Margai College of Education and Technology. He studied Accounting and Finance. He had just been accepted for a degree program at Saint Monica University, 241 Avon bridge drive, Townsend, DE 19734 USA. And of 31 Bolling street, Kingtom. He wants to study Logistics and Supply Chain Management.

Mr. Mohamed Junior Sesay

He owns a business named Fishnet Enterprise which he started two years ago in July 2017, but Registered it in October 2018.

He is into growing our home products and vegetables such as; cassava leaves, potato leaves, Krain Krain, pepper, okra, and other foodstuffs like tola, fermented sesame seeds know amongst Sierra Leoneans as ogiri. He leased a four and a half acres of land at lungi which he uses for his farming.

Four and a half acres of Farm land in Lungi

This is the only thing he is doing and does not have any regular nine to five work. He has few sponsors who actually don’t offer any physical cash to him, but do provide support for him in other areas of his business especially in the agricultural and farming aspect; where he lacks expertise they then come in and offer help to take care of pest and provide control measures in the farming business, so that his products can meet the international standards of the European market. He has a Company from Belgium named “Bergamini Serge Scrl” that are into the supermarket and hyper stores business. They are currently sponsoring him through a project called “Fit For Market” that trains and teaches them; himself and his staffs to produce goods that meet all international standards and regulation, for European and United State market.

Green Pepper from Sierra Leone

There are times, like now when the rainy season is at its peak he sources some of his vegetables from out-growers if he does not have enough to supply from his farmland. As his land is swampy and too much rain can lead to water covering most of his leased land. It is during a time like this, he buys from out-growers that also produce under the same international standards

Frozen Cassava leaf

He ships his good to the United Kingdom and Belgium for now. But most of his shipment is for the UK. He has Sierra Leonean Vendors in UK like; Sabinah Food Store, of 8 Choument Road, Peckham, London SE154SE. He ships once every week to them. For Belgium, he ships supply as per request and they are foreign vendors; Germans that buy his products.

His Packaged good heading for ready to be shipped

He is currently using his mum’s place at waterloo as his factory site. Where is packaged all his goods and get them frozen? He then brings them to his place at Murray Town where he will continue to store them in the refrigerator until his next shipment. That is when he will take them to the airport, get them checked through customs and other bodies responsible for that. After this process, and when his goods had been approved he will then send to the appropriate countries.

Getting his goods through customs

Presently, he does not ship fish to the UK and Belgium, but fishes do go to America. So he is looking for strong vendors From USA that he might work with to be sending smoked stockfish. He gets his Fishes from the different wharves in Freetown such as; Goderich, Funkia, Sussex, Lakka, Bawbaw, Tombo and Mamah beach. He has local dryers in all these places who smoked the fishes for him following all standards and as we all know, smoking is a form of preservation too.

The flower pods from surrel called in Sierra Leone Shakpa
Local dryer called in Sierra Leone “Bandah”

Mohamed Junior Sesay is looking for competent, committed and reliable vendors to partner with or sponsors to promote him in his business. Anyone interested in working with him should do so by sending him an email.on ezesesay88@gmail.com or on his mobile phone +23276449222 for further information and discussion. He currently employs eight Sierra Leoneans and with more vendors, he would be able to employ more hands. As it is, he ships only once or twice a week if the weather is favorable as it is summertime, in most western countries sometimes he ships on Wednesdays and Sundays. If the weather is not favorable he ships only on Sundays. That is why he wants to get more vendors so he could possibly be able to ship thrice a week, expand and create more jobs for the youth of this country.

Raw fish waiting to be dried

Salone youth be like Mohamed Junior Sesay. Don’t just sit there and wait for hand out, hand me down or Bra you borbor de. Get on your feet and start something, no matter how small. It is never too late to turn over and challenge yourself. Let’s keep the spirit of the lion in us intact and take pride in what ours. ✌peace out

Fresh Krain Krain Leaves

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