By KABS KANU :
The prestigious National Organization of Sierra Leoneans in North America (NOSLINA) last Saturday held yet another highly successful Banquet and Awards Night at the St. Andrews Ukranian Orthodox Cathedral in Silver Spring , Maryland . Regal , colorful and majestic as usual, Sierra Leone’s version of the Oscar Awards Night (as many people have come to regard the annual event ), saw citizens, organizations and friends of Sierra Leone honored for their contribution to the upliftment of society. Many distingished Sierra Leoneans and nationals of the U.S. and other countries jammed the hall to take part in the event .
According to a description of the goals and objectives of the Organization : “ The National Organization of Sierra Leoneans in North America (NOSLINA) NOSLINA was launched as a nonprofit organization about 12 years ago in Washington DC when Sierra Leoneans and their friends/supporters came together to pool their resources to help campaign for an end to the brutal civil war, to restore democracy, and to promote sustainable development. Since that time, we have lobbied Congress to support the return of democracy, we have launched scholarships for needy children, we have pushed for Dual Citizenship for Sierra Leoneans so that they can be better positioned to help their country of origin, we have conducted public communication campaigns for peaceful conduct of elections, we have donated medical journals to the University of Sierra Leone, and recently we donated large community dumpsters to help reduce urban blithe and improve sanitation in Freetown. ”
2011 AWARD WINNERS as announced by the Chair, Mr. Melbourne Garber :
Acting in Accordance with Article VII of the Constitution of the National Organization of Sierra Leoneans in North America (NOSLINA, Amended 1999) the Board of Directors of NOSLINA has approved and authorized that honors, awards, and recognitions be bestowed on individuals/organizations for exemplary contributions to Sierra Leoneans in North America and in Sierra Leone. The awards will be conferred May 7, 2011, at 8:00 PM at the St. Andrew Ukrainian Orthodox Cathedral, 15100 New Hampshire Avenue, Silver Spring, Maryland, as part of the celebration of the 13th Anniversary of NOSLINA and the 50th Anniversary of Sierra Leone’s Independence. The 2011 NOSLINA Award recipients are:
Dr. Kandeh Yumkella, Director-General, U.N. Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO)
DIAMOND AWARD: The Organization’s highest Award – for his work in the international arena and contributions in the form of projects and programs worth millions to Sierra Leone and its people.
Mrs. Jennifer Renner-Thomas, CEO/Founding Member, Well Woman Clinic in Sierra Leone
HUMANITARIAN LEADERSHIP AWARD for demonstrated success working to promote and improve the quality of healthcare for women and children in Sierra Leone by providing need-based healthcare services for women from all walks of life.
Professor Ted Folarin Roberts, Associate Professor, Howard University School of Communications
HUMANITARIAN LEADERSHIP AWARD: For true multi-faceted humanitarian dedication, many of which include the use of his personal funds to support students, refugees and needy families, as well as being the first to introduce Africa’s arts, culture and theatre into Voice of America programming.
Sierra Leone American Family Club
HUMANITARIAN LEADERSHIP AWARD: For fostering cooperation amongst Sierra Leoneans and Sierra Leonean American families to provide educational support; promoting the maintenance of cultural expressions; and mentoring newly arrived Sierra Leone immigrants and youth.
Ms Mahen Bonetti, Founder and Executive Director of the African Film Festival
ENTREPRENAURIAL LEADERSHIP AWARD: For the establishment of an arts organization that is the vehicle for presenting Africa to others and promoting an understanding of the diversity of African cultures, through films produced by African filmmakers.
Winston Brown and Vallance Morrison, Brown Realty and Brown Insurance Group
ENTREPRENAURIAL LEADERSHIP AWARD: For embarking upon successful business endeavors in the United States, as well as championing the success of startup businesses, with special concern for Sierra Leonean interests, which provide employment opportunities for Sierra Leoneans in the United States and abroad.
Mr. Ronald Jusu, Ron Jusu and Associates
ENTREPRENAURIAL LEADERSHIP AWARD: For support to the many loyalists and lovers of Sierra Leone by helping to guide them though processes associated with fundraising activities, including but not limited to grant proposals and submissions; business plan writing and submissions; and strategic plans developments.
Dr. Fuambai Ahmadu and Mr. Mohamed Kosia, SiA Magazine/MSSLDC and C&C Promotions
COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP AWARD: For contributions in promoting the many talents of locally-based Sierra Leonean artists as well as those based in Sierra Leone who are seeking an international audience; and for promoting a hallmark of the African culture – the inner and outer beauty, charm, grace and compassion of African women.
Mr. David Vandy and the Sierra Theatre Productions, LLC
COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP AWARD: For actively engaging Sierra Leoneans to come together with the goal of educating and entertaining through the arts by producing plays that depict the Sierra Leonean culture and tradition in positive ways.
Ms Lucy Sumner and The Magic Penny, Inc.
COMMUNITY LEADERSHIP AWARD: For superior and dedicated service in providing financial support for educational, economic and agricultural programs in the Bompehtoke area of Sierra Leone.
Mohamed Sadu Bah, Esq.
Distinguished Posthumous Award: For devoted and dedicated Service to the Sierra Leone Community in the United States of America. In addition to a Posthumous Award, NOSLINA will present a special gift in honor of the late Attorney Sadu Bah, a gift befitting a NOSLINA founding member.
Professor Clifford Nelson Fyle
Posthumous Award: For his everlasting and significant contribution to the people of Sierra Leone as the author of the nation’s national anthem, which has made a profound impact and enhanced the name of Sierra Leone and the welfare of its peoples.
WE WILL BRING YOU A` FULL REPORT AND INTERVIEWS AS WELL AS PHOTOS OF THE GREAT NIGHT . STAY TUNED .