Five Things I Didn’t Know About Mali

By Marissa Sittler, Mali Rising Communications Intern

Hello again, everyone! It’s Marissa, Mali Rising’s summer 2017 Communications Intern. Today I’ll be sharing five things I did not know about Mali. Maybe you’ll learn something fun, too! 

1.    Mali is the biggest country in West Africa, and is about twice the size of Texas. I had no idea that Mali was this big-- it’s kind of hard to imagine!

2.    Salt used to be very valuable in Mali, and people used to trade gold for salt. Who knew salt could be so precious? 

3.    There is no official religion for Mali. Its constitution allows freedom of religion, but 90% of Mali’s population is Muslim. I am really happy that the Malian government offers its people choice of religion (or no religion)!

4.    Dance is a huge part of Mali’s culture. Masks are used in ceremonial events, and the Dogon people of central Mali have more than 75 different ritual masks. I love that such an uplifting activity such as dance brings people together in Mali (and all across the world). 

5.    The women’s national basketball team of Mali competed at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. I think it is amazing that the women of Mali were represented at such a huge international event! 

I hope you learned something new from my exploration of Mali. We could all benefit from knowing a little more about our world, and now you do!