Small-scale mining is a significant economic sector in Liberia, employing up to 45,000 people - ten percent of whom are women. The challenge is to ensure that miners earn sustainable livelihoods, ameliorate hazardous working conditions and access education and other necessities for their families. This project will create a revolving loan fund so that the miners can purchase the necessary tools to increase their productivity, and. financial management training so they can improve their skills.
What is the issue, problem, or challenge?
Artisinal mining starts with a miner who prospects sites and tests for sample rocks that will indicate diamonds presence.If there is a reasonable expectation diamonds are present, the miner will bring 3-15 diggers to open a pit,dig out the soil,and wash and sift it to separate potential diamonds from sediment.This work can be back-breaking,done by hand in areas that are often infested with malaria. While the diggers will receive a 50% split, if there is a diamond strike neither receives anything
How will this project solve this problem?
This project will allow the diggers to clear the pits more quickly using water pumps, thus increasing their output while lessening the time they spend on their knees for days in the pits. It will also provide financial management skills to the diggers as well as the miners and female members of the families. While the project will work with approximately 40 families, it will be replicated in other communities if it is successful.
Potential Long Term Impact
The project is a partnership between the Federation of Miners and Mineworkers Association (FOMAL) and Rice and Rights, a prominent civil society organization in Liberia. Because FOMAL represents over 10,000 miners and mineworkers, the project has the potential to reach thousands of miners if it is successful and the association is able to replicate it.
This project has been retired and is no longer accepting donations.