Building Hope

The Journey of Resettlement in Casamance 

For over three decades, the Casamance region in Senegal has grappled with the shadows of conflict, leaving behind a landscape scarred by displacement, poverty, and shattered infrastructure. But amidst the challenges, a beacon of hope emerges through initiatives like the Shelter for Life International (SFL) Returnee Reintegration Program. This blog post delves into the transformative journey of resettlement in Casamance, highlighting the efforts to rebuild communities and restore dignity to those affected by conflict. 

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A Path to Rebuilding:  

The SFL Returnee Reintegration Program stands as a testament to the power of collective action in the face of adversity. By facilitating the resettlement of displaced Casamançais and the construction of basic transitional shelters, SFL is paving the way for families to return to their places of origin with renewed hope. Each shelter represents more than just a physical structure; it symbolizes resilience, perseverance, and the promise of a brighter tomorrow. 

Sustainable Solutions:  

Beyond shelter construction, the program prioritizes the establishment of vital infrastructure, including safe water supply systems and latrines. Access to clean drinking water is not only a fundamental human right but also a cornerstone of community health and well-being. Through the construction of 15 new wells, SFL ensures that returning families have reliable access to this essential resource, laying the foundation for sustainable development and prosperity. 

Empowering Communities:  

Resettlement goes beyond the provision of physical infrastructure; it’s about empowering communities to shape their own futures. Through collaborative efforts with local stakeholders and beneficiaries, SFL fosters a sense of ownership and agency among returning families. By actively involving community members in the construction process and providing training on maintenance and management, the program cultivates self-reliance and resilience within Casamance communities. 

As we reflect on the progress made through the SFL Returnee Reintegration Program, it’s clear that the journey of resettlement in Casamance is not without its challenges. Yet, amidst the rubble of conflict, there shines a glimmer of hope—a hope fueled by the resilience of the human spirit and the collective determination to build a better tomorrow. Together, we stand committed to supporting the communities of Casamance as they reclaim their futures, one shelter, one well, and one dream at a time. 

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Mustafa Omar, CEO

Mustafa Omar
Chief Executive Officer

Mustafa Omar has worked for Shelter For Life International in the field and Headquarters management positions; managing projects, leading new business development, and guiding operations around the world. Mr. Omar was born and raised in Kabul, Afghanistan and has worked in post-conflict reconstruction, Disaster Risk Reduction caused by human or natural phenomena, and market-revitalization efforts in Central Asia, East and West Africa, Europe, and Middle East for the past twenty (20) plus years. Mustafa holds graduate degrees in business administration and urban planning and is working on a PhD at the Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution at George Mason University. Topics of research and professional interest include Market Resilience and Social Risk-Management, Influence of Environmental Degradation on Fragile Markets, Impact of Improving Physical Space on Lasting Peace, and the Interaction between Modern Governance and Informal Market Structures.

Gordon Wright
Vice Chairman

Gordon A. Wright is Founder and President of over 40 years with JIMI International and is an Elder at Tulsa Christian Fellowship. Mr. Wright owned and operated a lawn and tree service business for nearly 15 years. Mr. Wright also served with the US Army for three years in the 1960s.Two of Mr. Wright’s years were spent in South Korea as a Brigade Intelligence Sergeant. Mr. Wright has provided mentoring and counseling to spiritual leaders around the world; with specific attention to individuals in Russia, Ukraine and former Soviet Bloc countries. Mr. Wright helped to found and direct East/West Resources International and Global Assistance Partners International. Mr. Wright has served as one of the original founding board of directors for Shelter For Life International. Born in Erie, Pennsylvania, Gordon grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and currently resides in Tulsa, Oklahoma.