Sierra Leone is currently recovering from the socio-economic impact of the Ebola epidemic, which ended in 2015. And the decade-long civil war, which ended in 2002 and devastated infrastructures and public service systems, still makes it very hard for young people and entrepreneurs to thrive. Sierra Leone remains among the world’s poorest countries, ranking 179 out of 188 countries in the Human Development Index in 2015. 52.96% of the population lives below the income poverty line.
Economically, Sierra Leone was the country that was hit the hardest by the Ebola epidemic - the scale of which the world had never seen before. The Ebola crisis showed the importance to support and strengthen public and private sectors in Sierra Leone. It laid bare the urgency to increase employment and youth participation and to create sustainable socio-economic growth. It exposed the poor quality of health care, with the resultant effect of reversing the gains made on utilization, as trust and confidence in the health system were massively eroded. And, finally, it showed the need to strengthen the path towards peace and security.