Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger

by Rain for the Sahel and Sahara
Play Video
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Mentoring for At-Risk Nomadic Girls in Rural Niger
Jun 16, 2014

Nassile: Bridging Gaps and Building Bonds

Fulani girls transporting water 1.5 miles.
Fulani girls transporting water 1.5 miles.

As new schools open in rural and marginalized areas of Niger, a gap is forming between unschooled adults and educated young people. Parents who worked their whole lives are wondering why their children are exhausted after a day at school: “You have been sitting in a chair all day. Why are you so tired?” Some parents find it especially difficult to understand the value of education for girls when there are so many chores to do at home, like pulling water from the well, pounding grain, and collecting firewood for cooking.

In the RAIN mentoring program, local women from rural areas sponsor young girls, serving as a liaison between the school staff and parents, advocating for the girls’ education, and teaching them practical skills in semi-formal workshops. The workshops enable mentors and students to revisit key concepts learned at school using their mother tongue, and to supplement the informal learning that goes on in everyday village life with practical skills. The acquisition of practical skills is important because it helps the community see that supporting education is not a contradiction to their culture.

RAIN mentor Fatimata lives in Ouro Jelgoobe (or ‘Home of the Jelgoobe’), a part of the Nassile region where the famously nomadic Jelgoobe Fulani are located. Fatimata spends time with her students in a novel way: she accompanies them into the countryside in search of a particular kind of thick grass. Fatimata is a master crafter of secco mats; long mats which make the nomadic dome tents the Jelgoobe Fulani live in easy to disassemble and reassemble as families move with their cows in search of pastureland.

During Fatimata's time with her group of girls, she will teach them every step of the craft, from the collection of the thick grass to the final stages of production. At the same time, as they talk about school and other issues, Fatimata will serve as an informal counselor and ally, and they will form an important bond of trust. Mentors like Fatimata bonding with at-risk girls during familiar tasks while encouraging their studies is wholly unique. Normally, nomadic girls would accomplish these sorts of chores accompanied by family members, with discussions revolving around gossip or small talk rather than education - for a comparison, think of what you talk about when you go food shopping with a friend.

Your support makes it possible for RAIN mentors to champion girls’ dreams of education, offer support for schools, and make a lasting and positive difference to Niger’s future.

A nomadic Fulani camp with secco mat tents.
A nomadic Fulani camp with secco mat tents.
Nassile students in class.
Nassile students in class.
Mentor Faimata Boukari
Mentor Faimata Boukari

Links:

Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Comments:

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Rain for the Sahel and Sahara

Location: Portsmouth, New Hampshire - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @rain4sahara
Project Leader:
Freya Hoffman-Terry
Portsmouth, NH United States
$27,703 raised of $45,000 goal
 
462 donations
$17,297 to go
Donate Now
lock
Donating through GlobalGiving is safe, secure, and easy with many payment options to choose from. View other ways to donate

Rain for the Sahel and Sahara has earned this recognition on GlobalGiving:
Add Project to Favorites

Help raise money!

Support this important cause by creating a personalized fundraising page.

Start a Fundraiser

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.