By Fousseni Koné, Emergency communication officer (Intern)
Conflict and insecurity in central Mali has affected the living conditions of millions of families in this part of the country.
In 2020, research conducted by UN OCHA estimated that 1.5 million people in Mopti and Bandiagara regions were in need of food assistance. This figure has increased due to frequent attacks against villages.
The attacks caused displacement of communities, as is the case of little Djoulde’s family. She is a seven-year-old girl from a village near the town of Djenné, in central Mali. Unfortunately, four months ago, Djoulde and her disabled father were forced to flee to Djenné because of the violence.
“Our village was attacked by a group of armed men, I don't know where they came from, but they looked very scary to me because they had weapons. We lost everything. They confiscated all our property, including our cattle. All our activities have ceased since we fled our village,” Djoulde shared.
“We really suffered during the journey to reach the city of Djenné. I was scared for my Dad because I love him so much and I want him to be with me forever. Thanks to my older brother who arranged for him to be brought here using a cart because he cannot walk,” said Djoulde.
Djoulde's father, 62-year-old Souleymane, revealed that before the conflict-affected the lives of the farmers he had a family he was proud off, but since the attack, he is now an Internally Displaced Person, his life has completely changed.
“My family lived well, we had no problem accessing food; we could eat three meals each day. I owned 61 heads of sheep, a donkey and land to cultivate. Unfortunately, it is now a memory for us because we sometimes lack food since we left our home,” the old man said in tears.
Djoulde's family is one of the more than 1,000 internally displaced households benefiting from World Vision's seasonal assistance project for vulnerable people. For a year, the beneficiaries receive 25 kilos of rice, 3 litres of oil and spaghetti each month.
This support has enabled Djioulde and her family to overcome food insecurity during the difficult period. She says she is very grateful to World Vision for supporting vulnerable families like hers in localities affected by insecurity.
“Today, I am very happy that my father was selected among the beneficiaries because during the first month after our arrival, we had nothing to eat. I thank God for this food support. Now I eat rice porridge for breakfast, rice for lunch and spaghetti for dinner,” Djoulde happily shared.
These words from the seven-year-old little girl continue to motivate World Vision to go beyond and support initiatives towards addressing food insecurity in areas affected by conflict in Mali.
“I hope that I will not be the only child to receive food of this kind. I wish that other children like me will also benefit from the same support,” Djoulde concluded.