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Addressing Root Causes of Extreme Poverty

Volunteers for Sustainable Development in Africa (VOSIEDA) is a network of volunteers working to protect the planet and promote sustainable development to end extreme poverty, its root causes, and consequences, in West Africa’s Mano River Basin.

Our work is focused on long-term development programs, stakeholders’ engagement, and policy advocacy. Within these categories, we address a wide range of issues with the goals of protecting the environment and promoting sustainable development to end extreme poverty in West Africa.

VOSIEDA’s headquarters is in Monrovia, Liberia. However, we maintain volunteers and work with partners in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Republic of Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana.

Transforming The future together

We are an incubator of grassroots innovators and a leader in community-driven development. For more than 18 years, we have worked to empower communities in Liberia and other parts of West Africa in becoming healthier, economically prosperous, socially inclusive, and productive.

We work like this because we believed overcoming poverty and injustice from our communities cannot be left to acts of kindness. We must now use other armaments such as empowerment, technology, social and environmental justice, human rights, good governance, etc. We use innovation and creativity to make this happen, and we are not afraid to explore new methods to achieve better results.

Latest Development News

VOSIEDA’s online pressroom gives you the latest press releases and other media resources including photos and videos from the field; fact sheets and research about our programs around Liberia and West Africa’s Mano River Basin. Relax and explore our media resources.

Strengthening Democracy Through Civic Participation in Liberia and the Sub-region.
Citizen voice and participation are essential to build and sustain democratic societies. Toward this end, our democracy and Human rights program promotes politically engaged and informed citizenries, active civil society organizations, organized labor, independent and open media, and representative political parties.
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Empowering Women and Girls for Shared Prosperity in Liberia and the Sub-region
Removing constraints and unleashing women’s full productive potentials in Liberia and the Mano River Basin would yield enormous dividends that will make whole sub-region more resilient and prosperous. For example, a better educated woman tend to be healthier, participate more in the formal labor market, earn higher incomes, have fewer children, marry at a later age, and enable better health care and education for her children, should she chooses to become a mother.
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Boosting Ecosystem Based Conservation in Liberia
VOSIEDA engages climate change from multiple standpoints, from assessing the risks that climate change poses to biodiversity and human survival, to advancing practical nature-based solutions centred on better conservation, management and restoration of critical ecosystems in Liberia and the Mano River Basin.
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Saving Rain Forests for Social, Economic and Environmental Benefits in Liberia and Sub-region
Liberia tropical rain forests are home to hundreds of thousands of land-based species of animals, plants and insects. These rain forest also combat climate change and buffer the impacts of storms and floods. By feeding our rivers, rain forests supply drinking water for nearly half of the largest cities in the region. They also provide shelter, jobs and security for forest-dependent populations.
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Our Impact

Explore VOSIEDA’s work and impact for 2019

At the heart of VOSIEDA is the promise of a better tomorrow for everyone in West Africa

2019 | Our Results

Every year, we keep our promise to hundred of thousands of people. In 2019, we empowered 750 families to gain access to improved livelihoods, protected hundreds of thousands of tropical forests through advocacy, rescued 60 children from modern slavery, empowered 200 women and youths, built capacity and provided social services for the poor. Consequently, more than 500 small farmers enjoyed increased income and savings. Nearly 50 of our local community organizations improved their performance.

Our Causes

The causes and effects of extreme poverty in West Africa are complicated and interlocking, so the best way to bring about real change is to implement multifaceted, broad-based local solutions to address the root causes and ramifications of poverty. These include long-term development programs, engagement of people and communities affected and policy advocacy to bring about structural change. Accordingly, VOSIEDA focus on coordinated action under six integrated programs outline below:

“We share the view of Albert Einstein, a theoretical physicist, who said ‘the world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.’

We focus on this region for several reasons. The countries in this sub-region including Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Ivory Coast typically fall toward the bottom of any list measuring small size economic activity, such as income per capita or GDP per capita, despite a wealth of natural resources.

Consequently, massive poverty and obscene inequality have now become terrible sources of generational poverty as well as crimes and all sort of evils.

We encourage you to join our mission to fight extreme poverty, save the planet and empower women and youths in the Mano River Basin, to walk out of extreme poverty and achieve prosperity.”

Cllr. Samuel Kpa-Sarto
Board of Directors

We need your help and voice. Join Us! Together, we can defeat extreme poverty.

Partner with VOSIEDA

We value partnerships with individuals, businesses or other organizations because partnership deepens impact and promote empowerment.

Volunteer at VOSIEDA

For nearly 20 years, VOSIEDA has been working to end poverty and environmental degradation. We envision communities where the local environment is protected, and people are empowered.

Donate to save lives and defeat poverty

VOSIEDA directly support communities and  supplies smallholder farmers with financing and training to grow their way out of hunger and poverty.

Fundraise for a just cause

VOSIEDA empowers the ultra-poor in West Africa Mano River Basin to lift themselves out of poverty through small sustainable businesses and  farm support services.

Pursue career that save lives

If you want to make a direct impact in people’s lives while enjoying the satisfaction of knowing that you’re making the world a better place, you may want to consider volunteering or pursuing a career at VOSIEDA.

We’d love to hear from you!

We pride ourselves on our relationships with partners and are always there to listen. If you have a comment or question or wish to discuss a new initiative, please feel free to get in touch with us.

Some of our
Partners and Supporters

United Nations Development Program (UNDP)

We first started working with UNDP in 2008, to reintegrate ex-fighters into their communities after the Liberian civil war. Since then we work with UNDP to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals in Liberia on many fronts.

Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Some of our recent projects with UNDP include: Climate Resilient Agriculture and Ecosystem-Based Adaptation in Liberia’s Coastal and Agroecological Zones; and Mano River post-Ebola medical surveillance and livelihoods initiative. To get detail information on these projects, kindly click the link below:
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The World Bank

We ‘re partnering with the World Bank on different initiatives ranging from youth empowerment, food security to smallholder tree crop revitalization support.

Fighting Extreme Poverty through Sustainable Solutions.

Among different projects, our partnership with the Bank has increased poor tree crop farmers’ incomes by rehabilitating unproductive plantations and supporting tree crop replanting. Under this partnership, we supported preparation activities toward future development of tree crop sector and effective smallholder participation in Liberia.
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Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS)

At a critical juncture, VOSIEDA collaborated with ECOWAS to promote social stability in Liberia and the region. We work with ECOWAS for a peaceful transfer of political power in Liberia in 2016/2017 contested general elections.

Improving Political Governance and Democratic Consolidation

ECOWAS’ ongoing efforts to promote peace and security in the West Africa through preventive diplomacy, supported key Liberian and regional civil society organizations including VOSIEDA in 2017/2018. We enhanced the capacity of peace actors, politicians, winners and losers in Liberia 2017 presidential and parliamentary elections and consolidated democracy, peace and stability.
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United Nations Democracy Funds

VOSIEDA works with different UN agencies. We partnered with UNDEF from 2010 – 2012 on a project that laid a foundation to empower civil society and encourage participation of marginalized populations in Liberia on their civic rights and duties following decades of marginalization, exclusion and conflicts.

Enhancing Citizen Participation In Democratic Governance In Liberia

Among the most fundamental problems facing West African democracies are the continued barriers to widespread participation and inclusion. In Liberia, VOSIEDA partnered with UNDEF to promote politically engaged and informed citizenry and active civil society organizations which led to a peaceful parliamentary and presidential elections in 2011.
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European Union

With the European Union, VOSIEDA is coordinating to support governance and market reforms that reduce illegal use of forest resources and benefit the poor in Liberia.

Supporting the Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA)and RED+ in Liberia

Our partnership is helping to protect livelihoods of millions of poor people dependent on forests for their livelihoods by reducing illegal logging. We are giving communities greater say in what happens to their forests and reduce the likelihood of conflict over forest tenure.
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Tropenbos International (TBI)

TBI is a Netherlands based Organization working to improve governance and management of tropical forests. TBI is partnering with VOSIEDA in Liberia to implement the Green Livelihoods Alliance - Forested Landscapes For Equity and Strengthening the capacity of non-state actors to improve FLEGT-VPA and REDD+ processes in Western Africa.

Making knowledge work for forests and people in Liberia

VOSIEDA and TBI partnership in Liberia is directed towards preservation of ecosystems and livelihood for rural communities. We are supporting communities and CSOs to advocate on forest and land governance; resist destructive oil palm expansion and logging; increase respect and recognition of tenure rights. We also support coalitions of CSOs to pursue change through evidence-based advocacy and engagement.
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U.S. Agency for International Development

As Liberia continues to rebuild its war-torn economy, USAID continue to partner with government and civil society including VOSIEDA to address underlying problems that gave rise to fourteen years of civil war, at the same time tackling the country’s immediate development needs and challenges.

Agriculture Diversification and Community Empowerment

As a viable Liberian civil society organization, VOSIEDA regularly partner with USAID funded projects ranging from ‘Liberia Community Infrastructure Program (LCIP) with DAI; the ‘Ebola Community Action Platform ECAP to Economic Recovery from Ebola for Liberia (EREL) with Mercy Corps among others. Click the link below to read details of some of our projects with USAID.
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United Nations Human Rights

VOSIEDA is partnering with the United Nations Human Right (Office of the High Commission (OHCHR)) through the United Nations Voluntary Trust Fund on Contemporary Forms of Slavery to support victims, especially women and children affected by contemporary forms of slavery in Liberia.

Transforming lives of women & children in Slavery

Human trafficking, child marriage, child labor and other form of modern-day slavery is prevalent in Liberia and the region. With our partners, we are working at the grassroot and national levels to change policies and practices; foster behavioral change and create new social norms to enable abused and exploited people to claim their human rights. We also provide direct assistance and work to set slaves free.
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Join Our Mission

Volunteers are the heart of VOSIEDA.  They provide professional and critical skills, time, energy,  personal commitment and resources to fight extreme poverty, improve the environment, empower women and youth and move communities beyond aid in West Africa.

Most volunteers work one day a week  on a year-round basis, and in most cases in their own countries and communities. Contact us today to learn how you can join our mission.

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