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After 39 years of active service Civil Servant turns agriculturist

After 39 years of active service Civil Servant turns agriculturist

After serving 39 years in the Ministry of Social Welfare Gender and Children’s Affairs (MSGWCA) as Acting Kenema district’s Principal Social Development Officer (PSDO), James Bampia Bundu Snr. has finally decided to go into Agric business, as part of his move to ensure sustainable livelihood for women and young people in rural communities.  (Photo: J B Bundu flanked by the regional Agriculture Officer)

Bundu retired from active service in 2013, and took agric business as an opportunity to contribute to the economic growth of the country while he serves his retirement.

“I was inspired by my late Uncle PC Kanie Mahoi who love farming and who taught me how to farm as he used to have a big farm where I use to work before I go to school.

I grew up to love farming because it was the only job we use to do when we were boys and the only job I know” he said, adding that during his working day in the ministry he always had a backyard garden where he plant his vegetables.

Bundu maintained that despite he had retired from active service but he was still concerned about the welfare of women, girls and young people especially the vulnerable ones in the Eastern part of the country.

He disclosed that people runaway from agricultural communities to urban centre because they were afraid of the work load and that was mostly because they were not realizing much from the farming activities.

James Bundu working in his farm

James Bundu working in his farm

He maintained that the major challenges they are facing as large scale farmers, was the non-availability of agricultural equipment and the stiff loan agreement and high interest rate given by the community banks.

The Director of Program disclosed that his organization has a total of 61 female volunteers and 24 male volunteers who work toward transforming the agricultural business to a profit making venture.

He admitted that, his organization had been working towards creating and building partners’ relationship with Local CBO’s, NGO’s and Development partners to enhance sufficient funds and increase their supports.

Bundu said the ministry of agriculture needed to provide technical support to farmer and also provide certain essential tools that would help boost productive in agric business.

He called on other organizations that were into agriculture to partner with his organization to improve on agricultural productive in Kailahun.

Giving a background of his organization, Bundu explained that Tamem Integrated Agricultural and Advocacy Association (TIAA – SL) was established on the 5th March 2013, as a community Based Organization established by a group of future focused development workers in Kailahun District, Eastern Sierra Leone, working in the quest of creating a space for sustainable livelihood for women and young people in rural communities of Kailahun district through right based approach.

Community farmers working on the farm

Community farmers working on the farm

TIAA – SL as it is know, he said , is registered with the Ministry of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs (MSWGCA), Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Food Security (MAFF&S) and Kailahun District Council (KDC) and is govern by an Advisory Board, Management Team headed by the Director of Programmes.

“Our primary focus is to enhance durable solution to community revenue by improving women and youth social-economic status, human nutrition and health through livelihood support, knowledge building and advocacy” he said.

By Bampia James Bundu Jnr

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