Cliff and Nita Bailey Middle School

Girls Leading the Way!

We are trying something new, and it is so exciting we wanted to share! Our Girls Project Coordinator, Hindaty, wanted to help our Girls Project girls build their leadership skills. Hindaty found a powerful female trainer and together they designed a wonderful training for the girls. We just tested the training in the first partner village, and it was inspiring! Check out the photos…

My Name is Siraba

My name is Siraba. I am in grade 9 at Beneko's Cliff and Nita Bailey Middle School….When I started middle school two years ago it was also the beginning of the Girls Project. Thanks to the different activities of the Girl Project, such as monthly meetings on different themes, the menstrual cycle, the meeting with women of different skills (women nurses, engineers), the women's football competition, advice and talks, etc., I started to set goals. Little by little, I started to love school.

Mothers' Loan Fund Means Sustainable Girls' Education

Mali Rising Foundation is trying something new to make sure our Girls Project is sustainable — micro-finance loans through our Mothers’ Loan Fund. With this new micro-finance project, more than 30 mothers in our three pilot villages will benefit from credit to finance their small businesses.

Food & Fun With the Girls Project

As part of keeping girls in school, Mali Rising’s Girls Project initiated a new activity that will allow girls to have not only theoretical knowledge but also practical knowledge. This month, our session with the girls focused on "good nutrition.” The purpose of this activity is to teach girls the different nutritious foods, the composition of a balanced breakfast, the importance of breakfast especially for teenagers, how to eat well. The aim is to give girls the love of school through the preparation of new dishes with local products. Our dish of the day was bean dumplings and vegetable salads.

Visiting Speakers Help Our Girls Think About the Future

At this time of year there is just so much going on at Mali Rising schools that it is hard to keep everyone up to date on all the news. Year-end exams and summer are rushing at our students, just like they are here in the United States. But I wanted to share just a little peek at something powerful girls involved with our Girls Project have been up to -- meeting with career women in Mali to explore options for their future.

On the Road from Zela to Beneko

Just 10 days remain for participants in our Miles to Mali challenge! So far, walkers have covered 1,223 miles and raised more than $1,600 to raise funds for our next school. Why do they do it? To help girls like those our staff meet up with on the road to school last week. We found two groups of girls making their way from the small hamlet of Zela to the village of Beneko, home to our Cliff and Nita Bailey Middle School.  Each day, the girls traverse more than 4 miles each way with the goal of improving their lives at school.

Simidjila's Girls vs. Beneko's Birds: Girls Soccer!

We love gritty girls. Gritty, you say? Yes! Grit, leadership skills, teamwork abilities, and self-confidence are critical traits for strong kids. These traits are especially important for girls in Mali, who must overcome many obstacles to get the education they deserve. Thanks to our donors, we support the development of all these traits through participation with our new girls' soccer teams. Check out this blog post for news and photos from the first-ever, inter-school Mali Rising soccer match!

Mariam: Building Skills for the Future "...In Case I'm the Boss" Someday

When anyone strikes out on their own, it can be a scary time. For young women like Mariam, that fear is balanced out by the hope of something better.Mariam graduated from Mali Rising’s Cliff and Nita Bailey Middle School back in 2013. She is now 22, and working her way through university.

Textbooks = A Dancing, Singing, Village-Wide Celebration

Wow. I get excited about a new book, but the village of Beneko REALLY gets excited. I mean – they literally throw a party!  Thanks to the generosity of Mike and Bonnie King and dozens of their friends, last week we delivered more than 1,000 textbooks to our middle school in the remote village of Beneko. See the party Beneko threw to welcome their new textbooks...

Checking In On Our Girls In Mali

When I talk with anyone about our work, the project that people most connect with is our Girls Project. Men and women, people from the U.S. or people from Mali,  younger or older -- everyone gets excited about making sure girls get an equal education. So I try to be sure to do a periodic update on our girls progress under the Girls Project. I know  you're rooting for our girls, so here's the latest news from our Girls Project Coordinator, Hindaty.