Tuesday, April 01, 2008

So here we are, in the Djenne library. More precisely, here we are in the children’s reading room. The problem is, firstly, that US AID built the library, but then they stopped. They didn’t enquire what would happen next it appears. There is not even one book in the children’s library. Nobody bothered to stock it. (Secondly, but possibly besides the point, even if there were books, children here just as in Europe can’t be bothered with Goldielocks anymore. Even poor Malian kids want TV and computer games. )
This seems to me a perfect example of what is going on all the time all around me- lots of aid projects which end up nowhere. Djenne is full of do-gooders on various schemes who have absolutely no contact with each other. And no one in Djenne seems to tell them anything. Soon there will be another library built by some well-meaning people who never bothered to find out that there actually is a library already- it just needs material.


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