The Center for Memory and Reparations facilitates remembrance and common narratives around the Sierra Leonean civil war (1991 - 2002). It is dedicated to memory and symbolic reparations for survivors of the brutal civil war that occurred in Sierra Leone, including the experiences of former child soldiers, amputees, and rape victims. The center serves as a platform for justice, granting an avenue to the voices and experiences of those who were most affected by the war and continue to be most vulnerable in society. Moreover, it will provide survivors room for individual healing through reflection and help build common narratives. Our activities are currently divided into these areas:

I. Year of Remembrance - With support from the African Transitional Justice Legacy Fund we are facilitating a year of remembrance, dialogue and reconciliation activities around the Sierra Leonean civil war and its legacy leading up to the 30th anniversary of the start of the conflict in Bomaru on March 23, 2021. We are promoting public understanding of the civil war and its transitional justice mechanisms such as the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) and the Special Court for Sierra Leone, lobbying the Government of Sierra Leone to undertake the implementation of certain symbolic recommendations of the TRC. 

a. Mass Graves Identification, Protection and Traditional Rites - re-identifying mass graves and other sites, protecting them and placing

memorial markers as sites of conscience to facilitate remembrance and community reconciliation.

b. Showing Reconciliation Films or Civil War Documentaries to Schools - showing films and documentaries about the civil war and transitional justice to schools to facilitate dialogue and reconciliation. 

c. National Dialogue to Influence Reconciliation Policies:

  • National Reconciliation Day (January 18) - we encourage and lead Sierra Leoneans to commit 60 minutes of their day to community service through #DoSomethingforSierraLeone campaign.

  • Lobby Government - to sign resolution declaring National Reconciliation Day. Lobby Ministry of Education to include history of the civil war in secondary schools. Lobby Monuments and Relics Commission to declare mass graves and other sites of conscience as national monuments. 

d. 30th Anniversary Commemorating the Sierra Leonean Civil War - remembrance ceremonies and candlelight vigils commemorating the 30th anniversary of the first attract on Bomaru.

II. Oral History - we also host an oral-history project dedicated to recording testimonies from those who survived the Sierra Leonean civil war to ensure that the history of the civil war is preserved in order to help prevent a repetition of similar atrocities. Full-length testimonies as well as shorter and more accessible video clips will be available to the public, accompanied by written transcripts for easy browsing online. Testimonies will be presented in numerous ways as part of larger educational programs for high schools and colleges in Sierra Leone, and as a part of a future museum exhibit.

III. Memba Podcast - The Memba Podcast provides relevant information about the civil war and transitional justice mechanisms in order to educate and facilitate the process of developing common narratives.