Shelter for street children – Douentza
Independence and continuity through enterprising activities – Mali
Due to the crisis in the north of Mali (2012), many sources of income of the population have dried up (commerce, tourism), which has led to great poverty and an incredible increase in the number of street children and orphans. They have to beg for food and seldom have a warm meal.
Aprosédé is an association, founded in 1996 by a few mothers of disabled children. For the past 20 years, they have proven capable of helping children and underprivileged people, within a solid structure. In its centre, Aprosédé offers orphans and street children a warm meal and a safe place to sleep. To be less dependent on donations and to be able to help more people, the association wants to increase the income of the centre by expanding the textile processing activities and by selling clothing the women make of the fabrics. Dying fabric is a labour and time consuming process. The purchase of washing machines will increase their capacity and leave more time for other work activities in the centre. Moreover, the women want to enlarge the vegetable garden in order to be able to grow the ingredients for the warm meals themselves. This is an enormous cost reduction, which, at the same time, reduces their dependence on donations.
The donation of the AJF is used for washing machines, sewing machines, stock, seeds and a grain mill, to scale up the operation.
By independently generating an income, the association can safeguard its own continuity. Any donation can then be used for ‘extras’, such as tuition fees for children. Eventually, this project will also prevent children from giving in to the temptations of jihadism. Many underprivileged youths feel attracted to these kinds of groupings, because initially, they often provide food, education and an identity.