Aug 16, 2019

Making a Difference for Village Communities

Mali is one of the poorest countries in the world. The government is unable to provide vaccinations to all its children and infants, particularly in rural areas of Ouelessebougou. The Alliance provides vaccinations for children and infants in its partner’s villages to save life of thousands of children and pregnant women each year. In rural areas, some children still die before their fifth birthday celebration because of the preventive diseases, including measles, polio, yellow fever, tuberculosis, tetanus, diphtheria, hepatitis A and the flu. The Alliance vaccinates pregnant women in the Ouelessebougou region, which save mothers and babies’ lives.

What makes Ouelessebougou Alliance’s vaccination program in our villages is our Health Agents and Matrons. They know everybody in their villages including pregnant women, infants, and children, and are the main actors during vaccination period. They organize vaccinations with the Alliance staff and make sure children, infants and pregnant woman receive the vaccinations they need to prevent them from preventable diseases. Since they come from the same village, our Health Agents and Matrons know where to find those who do not show up for their vaccinations. The Alliance goal is for nobody to be left behind during the vaccination campaigns. These Health Agents have a strong relationship with their people, and villagers trust them because they are part of their communities and they are excited to serve.

The Alliance vaccination program helps villagers to save time and money. They do not need to worry about rides to reach the nearest clinics or walk several miles to see local doctors. Additionally, villagers have limited of the income sources, and most of them live on less than a $1 per day, which is the extreme poverty line. When their children do not get vaccinated, they get sick. As a result, they have to sell their family crops to pay for medical bills, which cause famine, malnutrition, and extreme poverty in their families. The Alliance vaccination programs enables villagers to save money for their children’s schooling, clothes, and food.

Our vaccination program is making a huge difference in our villages. It has an impact on children and women health in the Ouelessebougou region. Several women told me this in their villages: “because of the Alliance vaccinations, our babies and children death is reducing and we are saving money. Children and pregnant women who are vaccinated are healthier than those who are not vaccinated. Vaccinated children do not get sick much and do not miss classes because of illnesses, and they are physically strong. We would like other organizations in our villages to look at the Alliance work as an example of effective program which is saving lives every day.”

The Alliance vaccination is the best way to save children lives in rural areas, alleviate poverty, and give hope to healthy future generations. Thank you for your donation to our vaccination program. You are blessing the lives of many families in Ouelessebougou.

Jun 3, 2019

Educate a Girl, Change the World

"An educated girl will stay healthy, save money, build a business, empower her community, lift her country, change the world."

Nema has plans for her future, a future that would not be possible without the support of Ouelessebougou Alliance's education program. She may only be eight years old, but she already knows she wants to be a teacher when she grows up. She is inspired by her second grade teacher, a mother of four who returned to school to teach with her newborn baby on her back. A quality education is vital for Nema to achieve her dream of teaching one day. 

To help Nema and other girls like her stay in school, Ouelessebougou Alliance works with its 12 partner elementary schools to not only provide quality education programs, but also heighten the awareness of the importance of girls' education. Historically, education of girls has not been a high priority in Mali. Due to factors like gender inequality, boys complete school at a faster rate than girls and tend to be more literate. Younger girls are often expected to stay home to do domestic chores. They may often be late or miss class due to cooking, cleaning or caring for their family. When girls start menustrating, they miss more school or drop out all together. Often, they are expected to marry at a young age.

The Alliance has worked for over 25 years in partnership with rural villages to break this cultural tradition. In villages that benefit from our education program, it is evident more and more parents recognize the value and now make their daughters' education a priority. Some have rearranged household chores, saved money for school fees and worked longer hours to ensure their girls can stay in school. 

Yet it takes more than working to change a parent's mindsight. To encourage local ownership of our education programs, the village is responsible for facilitating trainings, engaging parents, solving problems with an education council, paying the teachers' salaries and maintaining the classrooms. The Alliance provides support by supplying school supplies and facilities, teacher training and literacy workshops.

This is how your donations help. 100% of your charitable gift goes directly to Ouelessebougou to fund our education program. Our goal is for every student to have access to the resources they need for a successful education experience. This will benefit more girls like Nema. We are committed to increasing girls' enrollment and your contribution makes that happen. Iniche!!!

May 16, 2019

Fight Disease - One Vaccination at a Time

On May 5, 2019, Ouelessebougou Alliance commemorated its 33rd year of partnering with the villagers in Ouelessebougou at our annual Gala Auction. Nearly 400 guests joined together to celebrate our mission, learn more about our programs and experience African culture. Guests had the opportunity to donate to our 2019 health and education projects during the live auction. Our "Fight Disease" project was introduced by Claire Johnson, a volunteer who travelled to Ouelessebougou during our expedition last November. She told the audience about her experience in the village of Djenfing, where she observed our immunization program. Mothers had waited several hours for the vaccinator to arrive from the city. Even though they had to wait, they were happy and grateful that their children would have the opportunity to be immunized. Mothers expressed their thanks and told her that they knew their children would have a chance for a healthier future because they were vaccinated from life-threatening diseases.

"For the cost of eating out a restaurant for lunch once a month, you can protect vulnerable children from illness and even death," Claire said. By contributing to the Alliance's vaccination program, you are making an investment in the children of Ouelessebougou. You are helping our tireless efforts to fight disease - one vaccination at a time. Please join us -- and the guests from the Gala Auction -- in donating to this important work. Together, we can protect children and make Ouelessebougou a healthier place for all.

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