Breaking the circle- Sierra Leone
This project is focused on juveniles in conflict with the law who have suffered incarceration under terrible conditions and the new realities they face in Sierra Leone. The juveniles are released after long periods in prison without rehabilitation. The photo essay follow the lives of minors released from Pademba prison, both those that have returned to the streets trying to survive, as well as those taken care of by the NGO Free Minor Africa (FMA). This organization offers a social reintegration program through work and/or schooling.
I want to divulge the possibilities for change in the lives of young minors after the incarceration and the new realities these ex-prisoners face in Sierra Leone. I came across these boys in the maximum-security prison of Pademba, where they were serving time alongside 1,300 adult prisoners under terrible conditions. As minors they would never enter a maximum-security prison. The juveniles are released after long periods in prison without rehabilitation. Many of them were street boys, orphans for the civil war. Some of them had relatives but the relationship with them was damaged after the stigma of the prison. The lack of opportunities when they go out is directly related with recidivism rates. My documentary work is focused on the lives of five young former prisoners. Some of the mafter prison (2010) returned to the streets. Abu, Abdul and Mohamed were in conflict with law and some returned to prison. I founded in 2012 Free MinorAfrica’s social rehabilitation program to help juveniles in conflict with law.