For more than 15 years, the association Les Puits du Désert has been working in Niger in a very desert area where it is one of the few French associations to carry out actions in a locality forgotten by other humanitarian associations.
Its mission is to improve living standards for Tuareg communities. In this predominantly desert country, access to water is very limited and is a major daily challenge for particularly disadvantaged nomadic and sedentary populations. For children, direct access to water relieves them of the chore of fetching water – which often takes several hours a day – and opens the way to school.
Since 2004, more than 300 wells (pastoral workers’, market gardeners’ or villagers’) have been built or restored in the Agadez region. The association has also enabled the construction of schools, simple but “permanent” buildings (concrete walls, ceilings and roof made of sheet metal) that protect children from harsh weather conditions. The association is also working to set up school canteens and gardens. It is also taking action to empower women and improve access to basic health care. In close collaboration with its local partner, the Nigerian NGO TIDENE, Les Puits du Désert has so far enabled nearly 100,000 highly vulnerable people to benefit from such infrastructure.
The project: The Foundation is providing financial support for the construction of two market gardeners’ wells and two school gardens in two primary schools in the Agadez region, in northern Niger.
By supporting this project, the Foundation is providing direct access to water in these two schools.
Thanks to the construction of these market gardeners’ and counter-wells, the establishment and irrigation of vegetable gardens within these two school structures is finally possible. It can thus help to diversify meals, which are often highly rudimentary, while allowing 345 pupils to explore new fruits and vegetables.
In this extremely poor region, the “Les Puits du Désert” association hopes to improve the attendance record and school results of these young children. The management of the two gardens as well as the pupils’ initiation to market gardening are overseen by the parent teachers association (PTA) and by teachers.