Support for projects which support women's development
This has been one of MDG and J&D’s top priorities and has covered a variety of approaches. These schemes often fit into bigger projects undertaken by J&D. For example:
New Market Gardens
We have funded a number of market garden projects where women have been enabled to share a plot of land, manage it themselves and grow vegetables for domestic use and for sale in local markets. J&D works with the women to develop a committee and the skills to organise the project so that it is self -sustaining.
Grain grinding mills
MDG and J&D have together provided many local women’s groups with a diesel-powered mill which is managed by the women themselves. The mill means that women no longer have to pound their grain by hand and saves them literally hours of work each day The mills are able to generate a surplus to meet maintenance and running costs, so that the mill itself is sustainable, and sometimes the profits are sufficient to fund other activities in the village.
Building new wards at the Kolondieba hospital
Kolondieba is in the far south of Mali about 180 k from Bamako. It is the main town for a 'cercle' of about 30 village communities within the administrative region of Sikasso. The only significant hospital is the one at Kolondieba which is the referral centre for a population of 200,000.
J&D were approached by the hospital about major problems of capacity as it could not house a big increase in the numbers of women with high-risk pregnancy and the numbers of malnourished infants.
Before the project women and children who were admitted to the hospital had to live in very unsatisfactory conditions, sleeping in outbuildings and even in the mortuary at one stage.
MDG raised the funding to build two new wards, as well as providing other facilities. This gave the hospital 20 new beds. Just under 372 women and children were treated last year in these wards.