By Akitania Nzally
The Development Studies Students’ Unit of the University of The Gambia recently reached the community of Sinchu Alieu as they toured Rural Gambia as part of their Participatory Rural Appraisal (PRA) trip to rural communities.
The PRA trip is an activity where the field students were taken to communities to gain vast experience on what rural communities naturally go through.
The tour was aimed to educate them on some of the problems and possible challenges that the rural communities face in their daily lives, also an additional study with experience gained from what they were taught in classrooms.
However, the tour gave students the opportunity to identify some communities which were said to be deprived of certain basic needs, an example of such a community is Sinchu Alieu Village in the Central River Region, which was established in 1982.
Speaking to the students on tour, Alhagie Alieu, the village head (alkalo) of Sinchu Alieu informed them that the village was established in 1982 with a current population of about 1000 people who are mainly the Fulani ethnic group. He described the village as small, looking at its landscape, which many of the villagers are agrarians.
In an interview with The Voice, Betty Ceesay, a UTG student shared her experience with this reporter as she realised that the people of Sinchu Alieu village have been living in abject poverty.
She noted in her findings that they have little access to potable drinking water the only source is through the wells and other domestic usage in the community which makes it difficult for the villagers to draw water from the wells due to the deepness of the wells.
Among other things lagging in the village, she said is a lack of gardening for the women, medical facilities, poor housing conditions, drainage system, and farming equipment which include fertilizers and pesticides to boost their output.