After Mariama moved to Freetown, she continued to visit her friends and family living in the internally displaced persons camp in Bo where she had grown up.


Originally established at the end of Sierra Leone’s civil war, the camp in Bo district had, over the years, developed into more of a permanent settlement than a temporary camp.

During one of her visits, Mariama learned of the death of two of her friends; unfortunately their son Samuel had no one who could properly care for him. Not knowing what to do about the situation, Mariama returned to Freetown. It was there that she heard Sadahatu, Kidsave’s senior social worker, speaking about the Kidsave Sierra Leone program on the radio.

Upon contacting Sahadatu and learning more about the program, Mariama initially hosted Samuel for short periods between visits to the camp. When she and her husband decided to take Samuel in as their son and the local chief of the camp gave his blessing, Samuel came to live with his new family in Freetown.

In order to better provide for Samuel, Mariama who is a hairdresser, used her Kidsave microloan to buy hair extensions to sell to her customers. Now, not only does she create great hair styles, but she has increased her profits by selling hair extensions.

Today, Samuel enjoys riding bikes and playing games with his cousins in the courtyard of the family compound. Recently he become the proud big brother to Emmanuelle.

Kidsave is committed to helping the people of Sierra Leone rebuild family connections and provide orphaned African children with the opportunity to grow up in permanent families. We are hopeful this program will be the inspiration for more hosting programs that lead to permanent family care for orphans throughout Africa.

Please help us in this mission

For more information contact Kristoff Kohlhagen, Manager of Kidsave Sierra Leone, at or call him in DC at (202) 503-3100.