Miss Sierra Leone 2014 | Goodwill Ambassador for The Desert Flower Foundation

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The Desert Flower Foundation by Waris Dirie has just announced their new Goodwill Ambassador and it’s no other than Sierra Leone’s Margaret Murray, better known as Miss Sierra Leone 2014.

Margaret is a 26 year-old second-year law student at Fourah Bay College, University of Sierra Leone who has been doing her bit to give back to her country since being crowned. She has been involved in several social and educational activities and in this difficult time of Ebola, she visits clinics and hospitals, giving out food supply and hand washing items to quarantined people. She is also helping with fund raising for ebola orphans.

This organisation was founded by Human Rights Activist, Supermodel and Bond girl, not just yet but one day cover GoWoman, Waris Dirie in 2002, then the Waris Dirie Foundation and renamed in 2010 “to reflect the broader approach to addressing Female Genital Mutilation though economic projects in Africa.” At the age of 13, Dirie was forced to marry a man who was old enough to be her grandfather and so she fled – from the trials and tribulations of  her life in the Somali desert to London where she worked as a housemaid before finding a job at McDonald’s. At the age of 18 she was discovered by leading fashion photographers and that was when her life took a turn for the better. Now she is focussed on using her life experiences to help other desert flowers of Africa so that they do not have to go through what she went through.

The key points of the Desert Flower Foundation are:

– Raise Awareness: Through workshops, seminars, conferences, presentations, charity events, online campaigns etc.waris_dirie(pp_w760_h760)

– Prevention work: Through projects like “Save a little desert flower”, which seeks to protect directly little girls in Africa from FGM.

– Damage Repair: Through our Desert Flower Centers we try to help and guide victims of FGM to regain, as much as possible, their life quality and confidence.

Desert Flower Foundation and the whole campaigns, projects and activities are funded through private donations and do not accept any funding or state subsidy in order to ensure their freedom of action.

 

[pullquote]We have to win the fight against Ebola and I am strongly involved to support my country in this fight. And FGM has to stop NOW.- Margaret Murray[/pullquote] 

Becoming a Goodwill Ambassador for The Desert Flower Foundation is a natural progression as Magaret has always being outspoke against Female Genital Mutilation. It is reported that 94% of children in Sierra Leone are affected. The foundation spoke to her about her commitment to fight FGM. She said; “You do not empower or honor a girl by cutting her genitals! You empower a girl by sending her to school and investing in her education. I met many women in my country Sierra Leone who are heavily traumatized and suffer from FGM (sic). Unfortunately my country is more affected by FGM than any other country in West Africa. Therefore it was a great decision by the Desert Flower Foundation to start here.”

Find out more about the Desert Flower Foundation HERE

 

Source: The Desert Flower Foundation

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