February 18, 2022

Roseline Isata Mansaray

Country: Sierra Leone

Expertise: Climate and Environmental Activist

Roseline Mansaray is a young climate and environmental activist in Sierra Leone who mobilizes young people to fight for action on climate change. She recognized early on that climate change is an emergency, not only in her home country of Sierra Leone but everywhere: floods, landslides, drought, temperature rise, sea level rise, and deforestation affect everyone.

In January 2020 Mansaray founded Fridays for Future Sierra Leone, an organization for young people to raise people’s awareness of the climate crisis, influence policy, and take action in their communities, including staging strikes. Since then, she has inspired more than 2,500 young people to do just that. One example: On June 5, 2021, she organized a climate strike in Gish International School near Makeni in northern Sierra Leone, demanding action on the worsening deforestation in the country. She seized the opportunity to address hundreds of students, highlighting the dangers of climate change and the role of young people in addressing it. She shared her discoveries that urbanization, mining, quarrying, agriculture, slash-and-burn farming, and firewood and timber production are all contributing to deforestation.

According to the Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Sierra Leone is ranked as the third most vulnerable country to climate change disasters across the world. And it is all too obvious that the country continues to experience increasingly adverse impacts of climate change in almost all sectors.

She once resided in a community called Kroo Bay Freetown, Sierra Leone. As one of the disaster-prone areas in Freetown, Kroo Bay is in a coastal zone subject to increased storms and flooding, storm surges, landslides, drought, high temperatures and fires, all made worse by climate change and causing huge losses to the coastal dwellers. When these disasters strike, people lose their lives while survivors are made homeless especially with the floods and fire disasters. This makes them poorer and in dire need of food and shelter. Young girls who survive but whose parents die as a result of climate disasters end up as prostitutes in central Freetown in order to earn a living. This happened, for example, after a March 2021 fire disaster in a slum community known as Susan’s Bay which left thousands affected.

She is very passionate about the environment and raises attention and awareness towards climate crisis and its consequences. She wishes to see a point in which the communities are resilient and ready to confront the effects of the climate crisis. Her favorite quote is: “The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything.”

Roseline Isata Mansaray: I have tasted the bitterness of climate change [Climate Generation-21]


#YouthVoices4Climate – Episode 9 – Isata Roseline Mansaray


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