By Kebba Jeffang
Mr. Pa Modou Sillah, the Caravan of Mercy Overseas Coordinator, who is also coordinating the Caravan of Mercy activities in both Senegal and Guinea Bissau, said his organisation will continue its goodwill gesture in providing Ramadan donations to families in the country.
Mr. Sillah was speaking in an interview with this reporter in his office at Brikama, shortly after his organization distributed food items for the Ramadan. He said the Caravan of Mercy which is registered as an international Non-Governmental Organisation in the country through its partners in the United Kingdom has donated food items to Gambians as part of their contributions to help the poor and needy. He disclosed that they have donated bags of rice, sugar, oil and tins of tomato paste worth D680, 625 and covering 948 families in the following villages in the Lower River Region (LRR) namely Nyoro Jataba, Sankandi, Wudehba, Wurokang, Dumbuto and Kwinella.
He said every year, they identify a new place for their Ramadan food distributions.
“This year, we went to LRR to do our normal Ramadan food distributions,” he said.
Mr. Sillah recalled that last year, Caravan of Mercy had distributed Ramadan food items to 700 families in the Central River Region (CRR North) and some parts of West Coast Region. He said the beneficiaries included widows, orphans, and needy children as well as some madarasas (schools) and masjids (mosques).
“We’re very much grateful on behalf of our beneficiaries to our donors in England and the United Kingdom who immensely contributed towards this noble course being carried out by Caravan of Mercy in the country,” he said.
He further described their partners in England as true believers of Allah.
“We’re praying to Allah the almighty to continue to give them the strength and blessings to enable them continue with their support,” said Mr. Sillah.
He said helping the poor, widows and the needy is one of their objectives and that they will continue with the support.
Explaining the history of Caravan of Mercy, he said it was registered in 2006 as a charitable organization and that now it has turned into an international NGO since 2012.
“I started this from my own pocket when I was teaching in Bermuda (UK) whereby I do savings from my monthly salaries to help students back home in The Gambia,” he disclosed.
Mr. Sillah further said whenever he was in the country on vocation, he would visit schools to pay schools fees for few students who are academically capable but are in need of scholarship to continue their education. “It was later on when some of my colleagues in Bermuda noticed what I was doing and they also joined by giving me donations to support my work in the Gambia which we started with 45 students. Today we have built two Madarasa in the North Bank Region and Central River Region with more than 1500 students,” said Caravan of Mercy Coordinator.
He said as an international NGO, they are also providing safe drinking water for local communities as well as supporting schools with educational materials and providing medical items to hospitals.