Mali has been at the epicenter of the instability plaguing the Sahel for the past few years. Myriad armed groups are operating in the region, while conflicts between the Bambara, Dogon, and Fulani communities have undermined cohesion in the central regions of Segou and Mopti. Mali’s conflicts have caused massive human rights violations and forced displacements, restricting access to education. As of October 2020, 1,230 schools were closed compared to 920 in June 2019. The Mopti region is most affected, with 741 schools closed. The COVID-19 pandemic has aggravated this multidimensional crisis and as of 13 May 2021, the country registered over 14,000 cases of Covid-19, of which 507 deaths have been recorded and over 9,000 people have recovered.

SeeD has been working with Search for Common Ground (Search) in West Africa since in 2016. With financial support from UNICEF, SeeD and Search launched a joint project to understand what is needed to help improve children’s access to education in the regions of Mopti, Gao and Timbuktu. The project will:

1) use the Search conflict scan method and SCORE to undertake an innovative research process leading to policy recommendations which will inform decisions on program design for increasing access to education in these 3 conflict-affected regions of Mali and;

2) use data to develop evidence-based approaches to strengthen the Malian education sector’s ability to mitigate the impact of conflict.

This project will contribute to COVID-19 response by exploring the impact of the pandemic on school attendance by pupils and teachers and assess the level of awareness about creating covid secure environments in schools.

Explore our results from 2021 here.