This year 1,900 children are attending school in 12 village elementary schools--maintained by the Alliance. Since the inception of our education programs, girls' school enrollment has increased substantially. This year 45% of students attending are GIRLS! In addition to enforcing girl enrollment, we provide textbooks, supplies, and bench desks in order to maintain a strong educational environment. We also work with the Malian government to ensure long-term sustainability of our schools.
Traditionally girls are expected to help their mothers with gardening during school hours, but mothers have learned the importance of sending their daughters to school and hope to be able to do so. School attendance continues to increase each year. More than 800 girls are now attending school in the 11 villages that the Alliance supports. Education is an opportunity that village women have historically never had.
The Alliance meets regularly with Village Education Councils to determine priorities and set goals for the coming year. All have the goal to increase the enrollment of girls in their schools. And, the Alliance continues to provide school supplies, textbooks, and bench desks for schools where enrollment is increasing.
Education helps to break the cycle of poverty and can improve the economic well being and health of a woman and her future children.