In an exclusive interview with The Standard, child and youth rights activist who doubles as founder of the organisation Fanta Sidibeh explained : “ JYF is a legally registered organisation that aims to support and consolidate the efforts children and youths in The Gambia towards social justice, promoting the rights of the child and empowering the youth. We are inspired by the vision of an environment where the voice of the youth will be heard, giving knowledge and support to effectively use it to create change in their lives. It is an organisation formed to bring ideas for a common platform and to tackle burning issues affecting rights of children and youths in The Gambia. The award ceremony is called ‘dynamic youth Award’. The award will recognise the significant role played by individuals and institutions in the protection and promotion of child rights and empowerment of youths. It is another avenue to create mentorship for young people in The Gambia. We have seen there is a problem of mentorship and role models youths can look up to for guidance.
Another problem we had is that we do not celebrate our success. In The Gambia we have great minds, role models, and mentors but the problem is we do not celebrate the success of our people. This award ceremony is an avenue to celebrate the success of our people and open the doors of opportunities for young people to look up to their role models. The theme of the award is ‘we are in this together. Together we can.’ The name of my organisation is Japalenteh youth foundation.It is my belief and concept because I believe in lending a hand, and togetherness. If we come together, we can create a brighter Gambia and future for young people and children. My aim is success for every youth and child that is the reason for this award.”
She added: “There is a problem of mentorship for many young people in The Gambia; we have role models, and great minds and successful people in this country. The award will look at how to create mentorship for young people to see whom they can go to and emulate. Adults need to open their doors for youths to come and talk to them. Young people need to be coached. One of the challenges confronting youths is lack of trust in ourselves that is why the theme of the award is ‘together we can’ .There are enough potentials and good brains in this country that if we come together we can make it.”
She thanked Gamtel/Gamcel for providing sponsorship for the event as well as the government for creating the enabling environment for youths and children.]]>