I’ve spent nearly a month traveling around the West African nation of Senegal under the wing of a Peace Corps volunteer and the groundbreaking organization Tostan. And when I say I’ve been traveling, I mean it!

Whether on foot, by bus, bush taxi or bike, I’ve been moving. Getting out to the most remote parts of Senegal takes time and skill…and a lot of languages. And that’s just getting around! Once you’re settled, the real work begins. Village life demands constant effort

The most remote places of Senegal are home to hundreds of villages.

It’s a life completely different than what I’m used to, but these are a lot of the places where schools, healthcare and other basic needs aren’t being met. These are also places where cultural practices like early marriage and Female Genital Cutting put women’s health at risk.

How can we help in a context we don’t fully understand, and in places so inaccessible?

For starters, we can learn like Tatiana is trying to do during her two years as a Peace Corps volunteer. We can also support the work of organizations like Tostan that work with communities through local facilitators to promote women and children’s rights. Complex issues like those out in remote villages aren’t out of reach—they just require a little more leg work to understand.

10 Kilometers That Way

How many days, public transport vehicles and languages does it take to get around the West African country of Senegal? Read on to find out…

Click here to read this travel guide…

Bassari Life in Motion – Part I

I’m learning that although village life moves slower, it moves constantly. Watch and learn what it takes to be Bassari—from hut building to rice pounding!

Click here to read this culture guide…

Photo Gallery: Bassari Life in Motion – Part II

There’s more! Learn more about village life in Senegal from the residents of Ethiolo…

Click here to see this photo gallery…

Someone Else’s Village

What would it take for you to move to a remote African village for two years? Learn why Tatiana is happy to be doing just that…

Click here to read this article…

Says Who? – Part I

Female Genital Cutting is wrong…right? Read why we need to look deeper into this one before moving forward…

Click here to read this article…

Says Who? – Part II

Learn how Tostan works with villages to promote human rights rather than against them.

Click here to read this article…

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About the Author: Laura is a journalism fellow with World Next Door. She graduated from the University of Arizona, Tucson with a degree in Animal Sciences and a minor in Spanish. She is constantly learning, making friends, dancing, and trying to understand her role in alleviating the suffering of others. Laura also attracts a lot of awkward situations.

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Comments

  1. Jim.M said... 

    Reply

    February 2nd, 2012 at 1:18 am  

    Thank you! This series has moved the bar in many ways. Wow.

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