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Congratulations to our Malian Scholar!

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Two new books

Here are two new books that have been the result of our sister city relationship with Segou and ongoing work in Mali:

Sunjata: Children of the Empire of Mali ~ Then & Now (published on Kindle) by Robin Poulton / Macky Tall - this book is intended for teachers and anyone with an interest in Malian history, life and culture as experienced by children of the region over several centuries.


The Most Vulnerable: Women, HIV and Islam in Mali by Christopher A. Brooks with translations by Salim Coumare (city councilor of Segou), based on research conducted in 2013 and provides a thoughtful, concise view of the experience and handling of HIV as a public health priority for Mali's women.

Segou welcomes $450,000 medical supplies!

On March 16, 2017, almost a year after the funding was secured,  the shipping container filled with medical supplies and equipment destined for our sister city's main Hopital Niankorofomba and Community Health Care Clinic in the Darasallam neighborhood arrived! City officials hosted a grand ceremony to celebrate the $450,000+ supplies donated through Project CURE, a Denver, Colorado USA-based non profit. Led by Segou's newly elected Mayor Nouhoum Diarra, the ceremony included representatives from the city's Sister City Committee and regional officials. You can learn more about the city's political and economic development goals and structures by visiting CPEL Segou







Solar powered festival transport & solidarity from Lagos

So much of what we share from Mali is music.
From Lagos to Mali: Bantu goes on 5000km anti-war road trip Feb 15, 2017 • by IfeOluwa Nihinlola

Bantu, the 13-piece Afro-funk band led by the host of Lagos' Afropolitan Vibes, Ade Bantu, embarked on a grueling road trip from Africa's Big Apple to Mali for Festival sur le Niger earlier this month.


The band undertook the 5 000km trip to be part of the festival's 13th edition and to make a statement against violence in war-torn Mali.

"Someone asked me why we would go through all this stress for a festival in some remote place,” Ade Bantu said.

“It’s simple, we were determined to show solidarity with our fellow brothers and sisters in Mali who have been battling with Islamist insurgency for years. This festival was important to help heal wounds and build bridges."
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And, apparently at this year's festival they used solar powered vehicles to transport musicians around the grounds... Go Segou!…

New release from TINARIWEN, y'all!!!!!!!!!

Le Festival Sur le Niger began on Feb. 1 - Wow!

This video features sampling of the contemporary artist workshops now going on at the festival: visual, spoken word and music arts ...



An ad for the festival, discusses the value of cultural celebrations ...

Improving Health Care & Lowering Barriers to Girls' Education

Virginia Friends of Mali invites you to plan your 2017 gift to support our mission through two projects:
Project CURE
In 2016, $25,000 was raised to send $450,000 worth of materiel that has JUST ARRIVED IN Segou! Project CURE cargo containers of hospital and medical supplies were shipped in December and arrived the last week of January in Segou (Richmond's sister city since 2009). The destination was L’Hôpital Niankoro Fomba and one of its associated community healthcare centers. Segou's sister city committee president, M Madani Sissoko, was on hand with hospital director, Dr. Abdoulaye Sanogo, to accept delivery of the materiel. In partnership with Rotary Club partners in the US and Mali, we are raising funds to send a second container this year. We have commitments for $15,000 and need your help to raise the remaining $10,000. Two anonymous donors have so far pledged $500 each. Perhaps you'll join them!

2017 Goal: $10,000    Raised: $1,000    Remaining: $9,000


Richmond Ho…