Despite coronavirus we have also achieved a lot in 2020

The last year once again in review

Waris Dirie looks back on a challenging year.

Dear Desert Flower Family,

the year 2020 was an incredible challenge for all of us. Lockdowns, social distancing, no travel, etc. The coronavirus completely disrupted our social lives. However, despite the pandemic, we were able to complete many projects in 2020 thanks to your amazing support:

  • In January, before the Corona virus paralyzed everything, we opened our Kiera Chaplin Desert Flower School for 400 children in Sierra Leone, West Africa. The patron of the school is Kiera Chaplin, model, actress, singer and granddaughter of the unforgettable Charlie Chaplin. She is also president of the Fondation Fleur du Desert, our organization in France.

  • At the same time we completed the Werner Holzer Desert Flower School in Allen Town (suburb of Sierra Leone's capital Freetown). Furthermore, we were able to make great progress in the construction of the third Desert Flower School, the Rotary Club Heidenheim School in the fishing village of Tombo. In total, 800 children will be taught in both schools in the future.

  • In February, the musical "Wüstenblume" by composer Uwe Fahrenkrog-Petersen ("99 Luftballons") and director Gil Mehmert ("Das Wunder von Bern") celebrated its world premiere at the Theater St. Gallen in Switzerland. The play tells the life story of Waris Dirie and empowers all girls and women. And raises awareness for the fight against the cruel crime of female genital mutilation (FGM).

  • During lockdown, we provided our sponsored children in Sierra Leone with radios so that they can participate in the distance learning program introduced by the government. Furthermore, we distributed 1,062 Desert Flower education boxes (reading and exercise book, pencils, sharpener, wooden ruler, school bag) to 19 schools in Sierra Leone. So that education for children does not fall by the wayside!

  • And in 2020, we were able to conclude a further 207 new sponsorship agreements as part of our "Save a Little Desert Flower" sponsorship project. This means that these girls, like our 1,000 sponsored girls so far, are now protected from FGM, receive a school education and additional medical care.

Dear donors, of course, all of this was only possible because of your generous support. Although we have to keep our distance, we have moved closer together. For this we say THANK YOU!


Love & Peace,

Waris Dirie

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