Fatoumatta L Kassama

Country representing

Gambia

Languages

Mandinka
Wolof

Education

  • Unversity of The Gambia
  • Bachelors of Science in Nursing and Reproductive Health
  • Diploma in Oplthalmic Nursing, Computer Engineering, Business training

Current organisation

EYE CARE FOR ALL

Current role

Founder & Coordinator

Skills and Expertise

Healthcare
Photography
Social entrepreneurship
Teaching and training
Women’s rights

Areas of interest

Business
Education
Health
Sustainable Development
Youth Unemployment

Website & Social Links

I am passionate about

I am passionate about eye health issues like Glaucoma eye disease, Non-Communicable Diseases such as Diabetes, Hypertension, Cancer, Cholesterol and Women and Girls’ Sexual and Reproductive Health Issues. I am involved in these issues because eye problems like Glaucoma is the leading cause of irreversible blindness in the world and a lot of Gambians are affected with this condition. It has affected the lives of many people in my community and some of them have become permanently bind. When people become blind in my country they lose their jobs, or they will not be employed, and they end up becoming beggars in the streets. In most cases, the girl child in the family drops out of school and goes out to beg with her parents or siblings. This deprive the girl from her right to education, unlocking her potentials and contributing in national development. Non-Communicable Diseases has increased the morbidity and mortality rates in my country. The incidence of hypertension, Diabetes and high Cholesterol levels can be reduced in my community by providing health education at grassroot levels in our communities targeting the youth and the elderly. When community members are aware of the diseases conditions and its preventive measures the morbidity and mortality rate will reduce drastically. Problems affecting women and girls has also increased unemployment and poverty rates among the youth population leaving them vulnerable to violence and sexual abuse. Empowering women and girls through vocational skills training such as photography, graphics designs, hair dressing, make-up and food services will create job opportunities for them as most of them will start their own businesses. Educating women and girls on sexual and reproductive health issues such as menstrual hygiene, sex education, family planning, STDs, HIV/AIDS and providing reusable sanitary pads for the less privileged girls in our communities will keep them in school, empower them and give them opportunities.

Actions

To create positive changes and be innovative in my community, I initiated a Community Based Organization called Eye Care For All, where we provide free home-based and community eye care services for the less privileged such as orphans, refugees, people living with disabilities, the elderly and prisoners living in The Gambia. I was able to able to register the organization and recruit 30 active volunteers. Currently, I am implementing a nationwide project on Glaucoma eye disease funded by the US embassy in The Gambia. I sensitize community members on Glaucoma eye disease using community Bantaba settings, focus group discussions, community schools, and community radio stations. For those living with disabilities, I transcribe sensitization messages to braille and interpret them in sign language during sensitization programs. I also use dram spots and cultural songs produced by community local artists and women groups living in the communities for edutainment purposes. Partnering with a friend, we initiated a Not-For Profit Organization called Prospect For Girls where we empower women and girls through vocational skills training such as tailoring, driving, food services, photography, hairdressing, make -up and graphics design. We also empower them through health education on Non-Communicable Diseases and Sexual and Reproductive issues like hypertension, diabetes, cancer, sex education, menstrual hygiene, STIS and family planning services. This will help create job opportunities for young people as many of them will start a business and employ others after skills training. To contribute to the global sustainable development goals, and contribute to economic development, I started a small business called Girls’ Pride. I order reusable sanitary pads and sell them to the less privileged girls and women at affordable prices in my country. To provide my products in a different way, I offer free health education to my customers on menstrual hygiene issues.