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SIERRA LEONE: a $26.8 million investment to strengthen climate resilience

Sierra Leone’s coastal communities, faced with rising sea levels and increasingly violent storms, are receiving crucial support with the announcement on 6 March 2024 of a $26.8 million initiative. The Green Climate Fund (GCF), in collaboration with the government of Sierra Leone and the non-governmental organisation (NGO) Save the Children, is launching an ambitious project to build resilience to the devastating effects of climate change along the coast of this West African country.
The Sierra Leone Coastal Resilience Project aims to enable communities to better plan for and adapt to the impacts of climate change, while improving their livelihoods. With the direct aim of reaching 260,000 people and benefiting a further million, the initiative will involve the conservation and restoration of 1,500 hectares of mangrove ecosystems essential for coastal protection and marine biodiversity.
Working with local partners, this five-year project will focus on improving food and water security, supporting education, enhancing social inclusion, and improving the health and well-being of coastal populations. Particular attention will be paid to women, young people and children, who are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Efforts will include building resilience in more than 70 schools, as well as improving education on climate change.
The $26.8 million funding comes primarily from a $25 million grant from the Green Climate Fund (GCF), supplemented by contributions from Sierra Leone’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the law firm Clifford Chance and Jersey Overseas Aid. This project, Save the Children’s fourth with the GCF and the first in sub-Saharan Africa, reflects the commitment of international organisations to supporting the most vulnerable communities in the face of the impacts of climate change.
Inclusive approaches and nature-based solutions
« Through this project, we have the opportunity to implement innovative solutions, harnessing nature-based approaches and sustainable practices to strengthen our coastal defences. We will work hand in hand with local communities, ensuring that they are actively involved in the decision-making process and that their voices are heard and valued, » explains Abu Bakar Massaquoi, Executive Chairman of the Sierra Leone EPA.
The project will be implemented in partnership with the EPA, local communities and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), following extensive consultations with all relevant stakeholders. The funding agreement was signed on 6 March 2024 at the GCF Board meeting in Kigali, Rwanda.
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