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Diallo Ibrahima
Mohamed Lamine Camara
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Study abroad is the only possible future for the young in Guinee.

My name is Ibrahima Diallo, born on October 6, 1979 in Conakry. I am part of an extended family of 40 members and we live in a 4 room apartment. I share one room with 8 brothers and 3 cousins.


My father is an elementary school teacher, but his little salary isn't sufficient to pay for our expenses and d so mother sells bread and green beans for some additional income.

In my early childhood, I was sent to a Koranic school. At the age of nine, I decided not to continue with this school, unless my father would send me to a French school. And, as he is a teacher, he took me to the French school. I was impressed bij the kaki school uniform of the other kids.

When I was a child, I was considered the most stubborn one in the family, because I was always writing in my notebooks and I asked my father for a new pencil every day.

In college, my father could not provide me and my brothers with school necessaries anymore. He thought that we had grown enough and we had to take care of our studies ourselves. I started to sell plastic bags on the Madina market, and I bought my school necessaries form the money I earned. Sometimes I worked as a traffic warden in a supermarket nearby.

Time went by and we were more and more in need of almost everything to be able to survive. My two older brothers dropped out of school, the third one had not had the chance to do the entrance examination for university. Our life is like a catastrophy, not one of my brothers -whom I could count on- succeeded in finishing their education to help us escape form this hell, which doesn't differentiate between child, youngster or old man. I asked myself how to get out of this misery?!

In 2000, I met with a Dutch woman, Ingeborg Beugel, who had come to Conakry to realize a documentary on the death of Yanguine and Fodé; two young boys who died in an attempt to escape from the misery in which we, today, still live. I was the main character in this documentary to reconstruct their lives and also to show the absolute poverty we live in to the European leaders.

In 2002, I had the chance to enter university, thanks to the financial help of Ingeborg and her crew, whom I wish to thank again. For me, this has been the biggest chance which even my ancestors have not had. Every three months I received an amount of money to pay for the university costs. Because that was not enough to make a living, I gave courses at home to earn around 10 Euro per month.

The universities in Guinee are not of good quality and the graduates from these institutes don't have any chance on a job neither in public administration, nor in private companies, just because their diplomas are considered non sufficient. So my wish would be to continue my studies in France to specialize in the field of international relations, private law and political science.

Guinee is a potentially rich country but in need of competent and ethical professionals in order to reduce its backwardness. Today I have finished my studies, but I have not found a job yet. I think I will find a stable job after my studies in France though, which gives me the opportunity to realize my future projects. After my studies, I will come back to Guinee to help and serve those in need.

S.O.S for us,

Diallo Ibrahima