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Story about one Malian Woman


From: Melissa Enderle (melissa_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Sat Nov 11 2000 - 13:02:56 PST

Last week I went to the Peace Corps sale - tons of art and crafts
made by people all over the country and more. Could have spent a lot
of money. While there, I met a young woman from the US who has come
back to Mali to document stories about the women of Mali. I will
share one story that she has written. If you want more information or
to make a donation to the project or to the Salamale's Health Clinic
contact: Alison Williams 60 Rockaway Ave. Marblehead, MA 01945 (781)

"Safiatou Diarra is a woman of about 25 years old. She is married to
Balla Traore, a man almost twice her age who has had two wives and
eleven children prior to her arrival. Theirs was an arranged marriage
when Safi was only about 16 years old. Having grown up in the large
city of Bouake, Ivory Coast, it has been difficult for Safi to adjust
to the ways of rural village life in Salamale. Especially tiring for
Safi is taking care of her nine year old son and Balla's other young
children while dealing with three consecutive losses of her own
infant babies. Without good health services in Salamale nor the means
or money to get her children to a nearby hospital, she has been
unable to give them the simple treatments and vaccinations they
needed for survival. Her husband is of no help and seems to have no
need for his own children. Nine months ago, Safi gave birth to their
fifth child, a healthy baby girl named Madama. With the help of a
family friend, she had the money to give birth in the hospital and
have all the needed vaccinations given to the baby. Safi prays that
this child will survive."

| Melissa Enderle |
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/ / / / Melissa Enderle