The Need

Sierra Leone has the second-highest child mortality rate in the world, behind Niger. A recent survey by the government and UNICEF confirms that more than one child out of four does not reach his or her fifth birthday. Currently, more than a third of children under five in Sierra Leone are chronically malnourished. Their immune systems are weak and the risk of premature death is high.

The causes of malnutrition are varied and have been linked to a lack of awareness in mothers about breastfeeding, a reluctance to seek health, and a lack of food diversification due to poverty. Many children’s malnutrition is caused by improper feeding practices.

In Sierra Leone, the rates of early and exclusive breastfeeding for infants aged up to six months are very low – around 8 per cent. Often, infants are fed non-breastmilk substitutes, especially water. This can prove harmful, because breastfeeding provides children with essential nutritional benefits that cannot be found in other sources.

Physical needs are not the sole needs of the people of Sierra Leone. Tree of Life (TOL) desires to holistically address physical, emotional and spiritual needs of those encountered through this project. Just as Jesus often fed the multitudes and healed the sick, at TOL we long to do the same. Ultimately, we want people to know the Truth of God’s love and provision to the people of the world through the gift of Jesus Christ. This is made known through our genuine love and concern for the impoverished communities of Sierra Leone. TOL is a bridge to the Truth of Christ by showing God’s love through His provision of the amazing Moringa Tree to malnourished communities.