Located in Liberia’s Montserrado County, Todee district is one of the nations’ rural districts with a large number of indigenous communities. The district comprises chiefdoms and clans that form the basis of the administrative structures; thus, Todee is administered by clan heads and chiefs. Majority of the population is involved in growing rice, vegetables, and cassava, fishing, and burning of charcoal. Similarly, the district has poor infrastructure as its roads are inaccessible and its bridges are impassable during rainy seasons. However, Todee district is one of the oldest districts in the country and it has the largest population. Notably, on 24th June 2016, the Union of Todeeans in the Americas (UTA) was formed by Todeeans in the diaspora to spearhead development programs and enhance Todee district’s international cooperation in fields, such as education, technology, farming, and investment.
Demographically, UTA comprises migrant citizens who are originally from Todee district. As a union, UTA welcomes members of diverse backgrounds, former residents of the district, and students from the same district. Based on the initial reasons for its formation, UTA intends to engage in charitable development and offer more educational opportunities to residents of Todee district, including those who are abroad. Moreover, Todee is one of the districts in Liberia with a larger population of indigenous communities who have minimal access to educational opportunities. On the same note, the district’s leadership uses traditional administrative systems and over-relies on culture; this is believed to control the social, political, economic, and technologic orientation of residents. However, with the formation of the UTA, Todee district residents have been exposed to the external environment through business interactions.
Furthermore, the Union of Todeeans in the Americas (UTA) emphasizes collaboration and cooperation between Todee district and external investors. Due to its level of underdevelopment, which is evidenced by its poor and inaccessible roads, low levels of education, and poor health facilities, UTA intends to create opportunities that encourage and attract potential investors which will result in the rapid economic development and enhance the empowerment of people in the region. The County Development Committee (n.d.) confirms that agriculture is one of the major economic activities in Todee district; the locals grow crops, such as rice, vegetables, and cassava, among others. Therefore, with increased external investment in agriculture, through the interactive efforts of UTA, it is possible for farmers to access profitable markets across the globe. Through this strategy, agricultural production in Todee district is set to increase due to the improvement in farming techniques. Moreover, Todee farmers have the opportunity to apply new forms of technology in agricultural production such as crop genetic engineering.
Apart from promoting agricultural investment in Todee district, UTA relies on its mission to ensure that poor families receive aid in the form of financial support, food, and other essential needs to improve the living standards of locals. On the same note, UTA promises to support the charitable development and offer educational opportunities for the people of Todee, Liberia. The Union of Todeeans in the Americas intends to improve the educational outcomes of underprivileged families, promote access to and provision of basic health care, and ensure that underprivileged families access food, good housing, and clothing, by seeking donations from the international community. Through such efforts, the Union of Todeeans in the Americas (UTA) sponsors initiatives that promote Todee district’s interaction and cooperation with the external world. Apparently, such efforts aimed at enhancing the international recognition of Todee district and to promote social, economic, technological, and political development.
County Development Committee. (n.d.). Montserrado county development agenda, Republic of Liberia 2008-2012. Retrieved from https://www.emansion.gov.lr/doc/MontserradoCDA.pdf
Sherman, F. (2011). Liberia: The land, its people, history and culture. Tanzania: New Africa Press.