The Tuareg people of the Air Massif in northern Niger have suffered through two years of an conflict between a protest group and the Niger military. Many people were forced to leave their homes and live in temporary homes in the neighboring cities of Agadez, Arlit and Tchirozerene.
Spring has brought peace to the region at last, and people are returning home to rebuild their lives. Each village — Ibourikoum, Aguelal, Tadek, Tefis and more — has its story. For people of the Air Massif, RAIN is their NGO, the partner they count and rely on. All are working together to restore their communities, homes, schools and school gardens. They are restarting their lives with nothing but spirit to see them through. The Gougaram garden was burned and is now home to a herd of donkeys. But the RAIN cistern stands and we will return! The walls of the Tadek schools are full of holes from mortar shells.The people of Soulefet have collected $200 to repair their well and are building an enclosure to keep animals our of their school garden. RAIN has given them a well pump and drip irrigation system to replace those destroyed during the insurrection.
And the children are happy to be back home, and back in school!
On Tuesday, March 16th, GlobalGiving will match every donation to RAIN by 30%. Your donations are already hard at work making a difference to these communities. Give an extra boost to our friends in the Air Massif to rebuild their gardens and schools, and bring life and learning back into the lives of the children by making a contribution on this special day. What better way to celebrate the promise of Spring, than by bringing renewal and rejuvenation to our Tuareg brothers and sisters!
With Warmest Regards,
RAIN’s Wodaabe Women’s Artisan Cooperative has earned over $800 for their children's school in Foudouk. They will use the funds to support a school food program.
The women put aside 50% of all profits from RAIN’s sale of their unique embroidered goods to help their school.
We are always looking for more ways for communities to support schools. This is durable development that brings parents and teachers together for better education for all.
Well done women of the Wodaabe Co-op!
One of RAIN’s core programs is the Literacy Loop — illiterate women volunteer to encourage girls to go to school and help them succeed there with counseling and advocacy. They also teach the girls traditional practical skills such as sewing and leather work that can provide future incomes.
As the mentors become more comfortable at school and learn the value of education, they enroll in RAIN literacy classes — and learn French, the national language of Niger, along with their girls. It is a touching and productive relationship for both girls and women!
Recently, a RAIN donor — having read about our mentors — sent letters to six of them, congratulating them on their good work for the girls. They were so thrilled to hear from an American, appreciative of their efforts. We all thank Larry Cassidy for this extreme act of kindness.
I’m sharing some photos of the mentors receiving their letters.
All the best, Bess
......."This is Hadiza Chaibou. She is an orphan. Since she’s been in the mentoring program she has become very content and courageous. She has progressed very well in all her activities and she truly loves her studies."
This is one of many stories that come in from our volunteer mentors about the girls in our Scholarship and Mentoring Program.
Thanks to your support during this Challenge, RAIN can now potentially reach more donors than ever before to create new stories of hope and success for girls in Niger.
We are excited to be a part of the GlobalGiving community. Look for some of the other programs RAIN has in Niger- school market gardens, HIV/AIDS education, women artisan cooperatives, and more!
Bess is in Niger now, meeting with parents and teachers in tweleve new communities to lay the foundation for more Scholarship and Mentoring programs. We will keep you updated on Bess' progress!
On behalf of all of us at RAIN, "Tanemeert" and Happy Holidays!
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