West Africa

From its regional office in Bamako, Mali, DVV International manages its activities in the region West Africa. The Institute supports networking between partners in the West African countries of Guinea and Mali with joint seminars, training and mutual visits. But there are also links with the work of DVV International in Morocco in North Africa. So, for example, trainers from Mali make it possible to introduce the Paolo Freire inspired REFLECT method (Regenerated Freirian Literacy through Empowering Community Techniques) in Morocco, while Moroccan professionals play an important role in cross-border training programmes for nomadic populations in the Sahel.

In the West African countries, meantime, many organisations that are active in the field of functional literacy for young people, adult education and lifelong learning, have organised themselves into networks. Thus the Pamoja West Africa network is one of the most important partners of DVV International and maintains the exchange and training of REFLECT practitioners in the region. The networks see their task in providing basic education and skills that are geared directly to the living conditions of the people and are particularly targeted at women. In addition, they are committed to ensuring that adult education gets a higher priority in education policy.

An important focus of the work is the exchange among partner countries. In this respect, DVV International has, for example, developed a handbook to be used in West African universities and for multipliers of adult education and for trainers in cooperation with practitioners from, among other places, Guinea, Mali, Morocco, Niger, Burkina Faso and Benin.

Adult education is an essential key to the solution of problems, especially during the recent crisis in the health sector in West Africa (Ebola) or in creating and securing a lasting peace (temporary occupation of northern Mali, the rise of organised crime and the Islamist militia threat throughout the Sahel region).