The safeguarding of traditional knowledge

This sub-regional project, implemented in Mali and Burkina Faso, fought against malnutrition of women and children, taking into account the traditional knowledge of African women about high nutritional local food products. Several workshops and seminars were organized, addressing especially young mothers, emphasizing the collection of traditional knowledge of local plants, vegetables, herbs and recipes. The collected traditional knowledge then was passed on to 16 female leaders of four villages and 130 other women of these four villages through trainings. The implementation of the project was supported by the countries’ Health Authorities.

Project Background: 

Mali faces numerous health challenges related to poverty, malnutrition, and inadequate hygiene and sanitation. Mali’s health and development indicators rank among the worst in the world. Malaria and other arthropod-borne diseases are prevalent in Mali, as are a number of infectious diseases such as cholera and tuberculosis. Public education in Mali is in principle provided free of charge and is compulsory for nine years between the ages of 7 and 16. However, Mali’s current primary school enrolment rate is low, largely because families are unable to cover the cost of uniforms, books, supplies, and other fees required to attend.

Burkina Faso was also strongly affected by the two crises of the Sahel region: on the one hand the food and nutrition crisis and the other hand by the high number of Malian refugees, which had to flee from the conflict in their country. A high number of them are settled in various refugee camps in Burkina Faso. Additionally, the local population is strongly affected by the food crisis.

Project Type

Development Project, Health

Project Duration

01/01/2011 to 31/12/2011




Burkina Faso / Mali


Koloko (Burkina Faso) and Finkolo (Mali)