19.11.14

A meeting with the President of Sierra Leone

Representatives of the Aurora Foundation paid a courtesy call on the President of Sierra Leone Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma at State House based on an invitation from the First Lady, to express their investment plans for fishing industry and the continuation of their charity work in Sierra Leone.

Introducing members of the Aurora team, the First Lady’s representative said that the Foundation has been in Sierra Leone since 2005, and has built 67 schools, trained 270 teachers and established mothers clubs around Kono District. He informed the President that Aurora plans to invest in Sierra Leone using its business wing, through the operation and management of all or some of the fish landing facilities around the country.

The Chairman of the Foundation Olafur Olafsson informed the President that the Foundation through its fisheries company participated in the bidding process for the fish landing sites and won the bids for three of the four sites.  He mentioned that the documentation process is still in progress, near completion. He added that the three landing sites will together have about 300 employees with the majority recruited locally. He further stated that local fishermen and employees of the company will be trained in improved fishing and fish handling and proc’essing skills and they will be given access to standard fishing gears to improve their fishing capacity and quality.

President Koroma welcomed the team, expressing his gratitude that they decided to visit his country during this difficult period. He mentioned that he was delighted to know that the Foundation has been in Sierra Leone since 2005, contributing to the transformation of Sierra Leone and improving the lives of Sierra Leoneans through their support to the education sector and now with their future investment plans.The President stated that he was very impressed with the approach of the Foundation, the holistic approach. He added that this is the first group that is combining charity and business, noting that it focuses on sustainability as the business wing will maintain the charity department and at the same time improve the income and business processes of the local people. He apprised that Sierra Leone is blessed with fisheries resources and that even though a lot of people are engaged in fishing activities, they are however not benefitting enough and the impact is not great as a result of archaic fishing and fish processing methods. He ended by wishing the Foundation the best in all their projects and pledging his full support to their projects.</br>