Distinguished Guest, Ladies and Gentlemen, on behalf of our organization, staff and management, I am honored to welcome you all in the humanitarian sector as you browse through our website.

Indeed, we are particularly grateful that you should accord us such honor during your search, as our human capacities are usually beyond our normal limits.  We hope that the Holy Spirit of God that is prevailed in this season of goodwill will inspire all of us at this time, to ensure through our various efforts that a successful and lasting mutual partnership emerges between all of us.

The African Relief In Action (ARIA International) was conceived in 1995, and given legitimacy by the government of the Republic of Guinea in July 1996.  The founding members were motivated by the lack of adequate response to the challenges posed by the multiple man-made and natural disasters that continue to ravage our continent, leading many of our compatriots to abandon their traditional and natural habitats, mostly for foreign and sometimes hostile terrain, in search of security, peace of mind, shelter and above all a future for their children.

ARIA International is an African initiative, based on the new philosophy that Africans must effectively participate in the search for solutions to our emerging problems.  It is also conscious of the remarkable number of women, children and youths who have become victims; particularly in the man-made disasters.  Children have been orphaned and others used as child soldiers, women have ended up as single mothers and widows.

Also, since amputations have become a weapon of warfare, amputees now constitute a new problem, which we must address with new initiative.  We have no doubt that there are so many partners, both local and international, who are working to ameliorate these new challenges, and offering hope to our unfortunate brothers and sisters.

Since our re-invigoration, we have benefited from the technical and moral guidance of CECI, OCHA and we appreciate their support. FEG-FAWE and UNDP have also given us material and moral support, we are grateful.  We benefited a two weeks capacity building training on computer – from April 7th to 18th, 2003 from Conge Solidaire which was sponsored by CECI.  We have also undergone management training from August 18th to 29th, 2003 again by CECI.

I would therefore like to convey a special thank you to Madam Audrey Barbe and Christophe Fering – our wonderful trainers, ARIA International will always remember you for your great effort and the knowledge you imparted to the trainees.  Words cannot express how deeply we were touched, by your wonderful lectures and I on behalf of ARIA International, want to assure you that your dynamic endeavor, will not go in vain, but will go a long way.

Finally, I want to share our vision “Service for the Needy”.  As victorious combatants in the struggle, we are trusting and hoping that you will view this same vision with us to assist the weaker NGOs, to form a world army of NGOs united against poverty, for the construction of a common universe of love, peace, human dignity for all and prosperity for all.

But we are also certain in our minds that it is never too late to help.  We therefore present ourselves to you as new passengers on the bandwagon of those who seek to provide hope for our continents and its people through collective action.  We hope we can rely on you for such co-operation.

I hope you enjoy learning about the African Relief In Action (ARIA International), and I hope you will find some meaningful way to become involved.

Joseph F.  Sankoh



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