I go by the Gambian name Binta Bah. I am 24 years of age and an American by nationality. I did my studies in the US at the Ohio State University in Columbus and graduated in 2012. I got a bachelor of arts degree and I am currently a volunteer at Tostan which empowers African communities with its head office in Basse URR. I have been here for the past four months and I am very passionate about volunteerism. I thought it wise enough to come and give back to a country that I don’t belong to by writing the communication pieces in English for people to see around the world what is happening in URR.
Coming to The Gambia and being based in a rural area such as Basse might be surprising to many people but I believe that volunteerism doesn’t have any boundaries. I had positive feedbacks from the Serahule, Fula and Mandinka communities we are currently working with. They are willing to work with Tostan in realising their dreams, so my efforts as a volunteer are appreciated by many and that amazes me. I am called different names such as ‘toubab’ every day but I am now grateful to say that I have a Gambian family and a Gambian name which I really appreciate and has added value to my life.
My volunteerism will not only stop here but it will continue even when I return to the US because I have my personal blog where I post events and many people have known where The Gambia is and what Tostan is doing as well.
By Sise Sawaneh]]>