By Helen Blakesley
Djélika Haïdara pushes a plaited braid off her face and hitches her five month-old son higher onto her hip. She leans down to look into the metal pot that’s simmering on the wood stoked stove, placed on the kitchen floor. Cooking has been her main occupation since they left Timbuktu. Since they fled in fear for their lives.
The day the rebels came, Djélika was sitting in the classroom with the other students, as she always did. Listening carefully to the teacher. It was her favorite lesson, physics and chemistry. Then the gunshots started, startling the teenagers sitting in their neat rows behind their desks. The rebels weren’t far away. Their stray bullets were finding innocent victims in the small school building. Some students fainted, others hid, still others were hit—and a number died.
Djélika was pregnant at the time. A newly wed bride carrying her first son. She […]
The landscape is desolate. Not a tree or a bush provides adequate shelter or shade. The wind is howling, children’s faces are streaked with dark lines of tears as the windswept sand hurts their eyes.
Halima is a young women who lives in the refugee camp of Ayorou Niger. She her left her hometown of Tabakota in Mali three month ago with 20 members of her family. “I have a small child you see, so when armed men started shooting, I got scared and left town, actually the whole family did,” she said.
Halima is grateful her family were given millet and vegetable oil. She is particularly happy about the 40kg charcoal bag she stands by. “I will be able to cook for the whole family for about three weeks with this,” she said.
CADEV, Caritas Niger is working in four camps helping 18,000 Malian refugees. They fled there after rebels seized […]
How did the conflict start?
Tuareg rebels led a rebellion in the north of Mali in January 2012 in a bid for independence. The Malian military staged a coup in March 2012 and Timbuktu, Gao and Kidal fell to armed groups. The rebels broke off peace talks at the beginning of January 2013 and subsequently took control of Konna and Diabali, about 400km from the capital, Bamako. One of their aims was to introduce Sharia Law. French troops launched an offensive in early January 2013 and are supported by African troops. They recaptured Konna, Diabli and other towns as well as the airport at Timbuktu.
What are the effects of the conflict on Malians?
The north has seen aerial bombardments and heavy fighting and before the that rebel invasion of towns. Many people have fled the unrest either further south or to neighbouring countries. The UN said there were over 200,000 internally […]
De Caritas Suisse
Des groupes islamistes terrorisent le nord du Mali depuis des mois. Des centaines de milliers de civils ont pris la fuite. Caritas maintient ses projets au Mali et prévoit de renforcer son aide alimentaire, dont bénéficient également les réfugiés.
«Beaucoup de réfugiés du nord sont arrivés à Mopti. De nombreuses femmes et fillettes ont été violées par les islamistes et par les militaires basés à Sévaré, la garnison voisine», témoigne Sylvia Mollet, une ancienne collaboratrice de Caritas Suisse qui vit dans la capitale malienne. L’organisation partenaire de Caritas Danaya So s’est occupée des victimes à Mopti, proche de la ligne de front.
En plus du conflit armé, le pays subit encore les conséquences de la grande sécheresse : «Actuellement, 4,6 millions de personnes souffrent de la crise alimentaire au Mali, principalement au nord. Depuis l’occupation du nord du pays par des groupes d’islamistes, près de 200’000 civils se sont réfugiés dans le […]
The stability of Mali and its neighbours are at stake. Since early 2012, rebel forces have taken a huge area of land, starting in the north of the country and are now close to the capital, Bamako.
Military intervention led by France and with the support of African countries is underway.
Over 350,000 have fled their homes to go further south or to neighbouring countries since last year. Caritas Mali says that people urgently need shelter, food, water and hygiene articles.
“We’re tired, we’re very tired,” said Ibrahima Diallo, who fled south from his home near Timbuktu, in the north of the country.
Caritas in Mali has been working with Catholic Relief Services (a US member of Caritas) on development projects which have been continuing during the time of unrest.
The director of Caritas in the town of Mopti, which lies in the path of rebel advancement says,“Giving those who have been displaced somewhere […]
Par Ryan Worms Au Burkina Faso, l’OCADES (Caritas Burkina) et ses partenaires internationaux poursuivent la mise en œuvre du projet d’aide aux populations victimes de la crise alimentaire dans 10 des 13 régions du pays. L’intervention menée ces derniers mois offre une assistance vitale à des milliers de familles parmi les plus vulnérables face à la faim et aux conséquences de la mauvaise saison agricole passée.
By Alistair Dutton, Caritas Internationalis Humanitaian Director
After what has been a very trying and anxious time for the people of Burkina Faso this year, it is a great pleasure to be with them at harvest time. The rains have been much better than recent years and the country is buzzing with life; the ponds, lakes and reservoirs are full with copious water lilies in bloom; the land is lush and verdant, the animals are healthy and lively; the crops, those that haven’t been harvested yet at least, are tall and heavy with grain. The roads are full of motorbikes loaded up with crates of vegetables being taken to market, while lorries from Ghana trawl the villages to buy grain and vegetables to take down to the markets of Tamale, Kumasi and Accra.
Thanks to Caritas this year, Jean Baptiste Kinda is preparing to harvest his tomatoes, aubergines and other vegetables, […]
By Lisa Krebs
For five years, Gaba Goundoukou has been a member of Aura, a partner organisation of Caritas Switzerland in Chad. Gaba is an educated farmer and works in 20 villages in the region Guéra, located in the east of the country. Gaba is responsible for the implementation of various activities of Aura for rural development, in collaboration with the villagers.
This year Gaba is fully engaged with the emergency assistance project of Caritas Switzerland and UNAD (Caritas Chad) that helps people from several regions of Chad who are severely affected by the drought. Help is mainly provided in form of food and new seeds.
From the beginning of the project, Gaba took on an important role: he was responsible for determining which families could benefit from the emergency assistance project. In order to make a fair selection, Gaba visited every household in “his” villages and completed a questionnaire with the […]
West Africa’s Sahel region faced devastating hunger in 2012 after drought left a huge swathe of countries short of food.
Chad was one of the worst affected countries, with poor rainfall last year hurting farmers and animal herders the most. Then locusts and severe flooding added to the misery.
In Chad, Caritas is focusing on the food needs of vulnerable populations through food distribution as well as activities to build agricultural sustainability through the provision of seeds, veterinary inputs and technical support in agricultural production.
With the support of Caritas members around the world, Caritas Switzerland has been working with Caritas Chad and a local partner ACORD to support farmers during the agricultural year, improving yields to avoid a vicious cycle of famine.
Caritas will help over 100,000 people with seeds and activities aimed at improving the resilience of farmers’ livelihoods throughout the year.
Read these stories from by Lisa Krebs on the difference […]