AUTO(nomy) for Abdulai en Nicky Bah

How useful is it to have your own car?! That takes you to any place, at any time of the day and with more that you can carry in two hands. It gives you independence, also called AUTONOMY.

I realize this more than ever!

After almost 3 years without a car I have been driving, whilst in the Netherlands, to many different places with the car of my parents. So nice and easy when you are doing grocery shopping, have an outing or other activities that need to be done. Realizing that we even have good public transport in the Netherlands, so different from Sierra Leone.

Since August 2017 I live with my husband, Abdulai, and son in Sierra Leone where we work as volunteers. We always managed to move around Freetown (the capital) with public transport. But from September 2019 my husband, Abdulai, is working as project manager for the organisation Love Justice and for this job he regularly visits the different parts of the country.

Love Justice trains and places monitors at borders and transit points to identify and stop trafficking as it is occurring, BEFORE beautiful lives are exploited and sold into slavery. For more information visit their website. 

Such a visit normally takes Abdulai about three days. A half a day to a whole day to reach his destination, the next day he does his work and only on the third day he travels back to Freetown. During these days we of course miss him a great deal…

A car would be for us as a family, but especially for Abdulai his work, a great asset! This because he can make better use of his time, becomes more flexible and can reach the more rural areas, there where public transportation can’t take him. And we have a specific car in mind! We would like one that is strong, can sustain us for many years, able to maintain it well and has 4WD so that it can take us anywhere.

Now we have two options:
1.      To buy a car in Sierra Leone. With this you need to be (very) lucky! It seems to be difficult to find one that is matching our wishes and is well maintained, especially if the car have been driving in Sierra Leone for some years and had different owners.
2.      Or buy a car in the Netherlands, fix it up at a good garage, export it and import it. This is more time consuming and takes a bit of work.

The cost for both options are around 10.000 EUR. Both options have pro’s and con’s. We tent to choose option 2 because of reliability, but that was at the beginning of this fundraiser. For now we are open minded and will wait for the right amount that matches the right car, but a Toyota Landcruiser will fit right into the picture...

So we are hoping to raise 10.000 EUR, for us a whole lot of money! We started the fundraiser for others to come along and help us realize this and we are almost half way!! We are praying and hoping to reach our goal with your support. If for example 50 people give 100 EUR or 100 people give 50 EUR we will get there in no time!

We have been dreaming about having our own car for some time now, Abdulai did a driving course and received his drivers license last December. And with our newest family member, Akim, being so heavy because of his love for milk we hope all the pieces will fall into place through this fundraiser. And let’s be honest, we cant be left behind when our eldest boy, Gabriel (see picture), already has a car?!

When starting this fundraiser at the beginning of July we had hoped to get the amount by the end of the month so I could have purchased the car in the Netherlands before my departure going back to Sierra Leone. This didn’t happen, what did happen on the last day of July was that a friend offered us to use their care until they will return. So amazing and so thankful, because this meets our need of a car AND makes us able to continue fundraising. We do hope to reach our goal before the end of the year, that would be such a wonderful ending of the year 2020, a special but also difficult year, for all of us!

“So ride along and become a passenger of our journey.”

With love,

Family Bah

Abdulai, Nicky, Gabriel and Akim
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Nicky Bah-te Slaa 
Geesteren, NL
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