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Meet Sierra Leone’s Essential Workers: The Mechanic

by Alhassan Lamin
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I’m from Makeni, Northern Sierra Leone, currently residing in Freetown. I am 22 years old. I have two children; a 10-year-old girl and a one-year-old boy. The children live with their mother, and I work as a mechanic to support them. Before COVID-19, my work as a mechanic was okay. In a month, I would repair cars for over 20 customers, which helped boost my income. The more cars I fix, the more money I make. Now I only have about 3 to 5 customers each month.

I’m starting to struggle to keep up with my family’s day-to-day expenses running. The crisis has changed how often we cook. Before the pandemic, we cooked every day; now we cook one sauce, save half for the next day. My daughter, who is in class 4, along with many other children in Sierra Leone, hasn’t been able to attend school for over 3-months, and because of that, I have been paying for extra tutoring so that she could keep up and not stay at home idle.

Credit: Essential Stories/OSIWA

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