In an interview with The Standard, former coordinator and chief good will ambassador of the organisation in Paris, BK Sillah explained:
“The association is for the purpose of contributing to humanity and therefore our main objectives are to add valueto everyone our activities may have impact on either directly or indirectly. The membership of the association is open to all and it is administered democratically by the goodwill ambassadors appointed by the main office in The Gambia. The organisation also extends the same hand of help to the people back in The Gambia. Our activities are geared for good purposes but not to make profit.
The creation of the branch will establish very strong ties with Paris City Council and other local communities. The branch will be working in partnership with other charitable agencies. Sydo hopes to create cultural cohesion and understanding which will provide us with an ethos we must honour in both thought and practice. By ethos, we mean a people’s self-understanding as well as its self-presentation in the world through its thought and practice.
“It is above all a cultural challenge. For culture is the totality of thought and practice by which a people creates itself, celebrates, sustains and develops itself and introduces itself to history and humanity. The Branch will put more effort in the preservation and promotion of our Soninke culture and language in Paris. There are many Serahule-Franco children and youths in Paris who do not have a strong sense of identity. Their language and culture is not known by them because of the bigger French cultural influence. By coming together as one people of the same origin we hope that there will be a greater possibility for the preservation and promotion of our Serahule culture abroad”.
Muhammed Tunkara, the former vice president of Sydo who doubles as goodwill ambassador in Paris dilated on the aims and objectives of the organisation.
“The organisation is out to complement the efforts of The Gambia government by promoting youth empowerment and cultural promotion and preservation as an indispensable mechanism in our socio-economic development,” he said.
The president of the Gambia Youth Association in Paris, Amara Tunkara, his vice president, Hagi Lemme Drammeh and secretary general, Ebrima Danso, also commended Sydo for opening its branch in Paris so as to help in creating among Serahules abroad a sense of pride in their language and cultural identity.
Other speakers included Isatou Drammeh and financial attaché at the Gambia Embassy in Paris, Jerreh Sonko.]]>