"When it’s time to register my children in school, I go to where I planted and I harvest crops and sell them to buy their uniforms.” - Jumama C. Varmah
Jumama lives in Goernodean, Liberia, where she and her children farm on the weekends when they aren’t in school.
The Liberian government routinely concedes large areas of fertile land to multinational agribusiness corporations. This limits the livelihoods of small-scale farmers, especially women who already struggle to access land. Jumama farms on the edge of one such concession, a right that could be stripped from her at any time.
Jumama has overcome many hurdles to finish school and support her family. Hurdles that include; two civil wars, seven pregnancies, an Ebola outbreak, poverty, and not least the fact that girls have a harder time accessing education in Liberia, a country where males are given priority in access to education and to farmland. Still, she has managed to access both.
Photos by Sylvain Cherkaoui @sylavin
for the Open Society Initiative for West Africa
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