Last month, Celles de la Terre (Women of the Earth) visited CREATE!’s partner communities in rural Senegal. Formed by three students at HEC Paris, Celles de la Terre is a global, year-long project to “meet outstanding and exceptional women who can inspire a younger generation of women with their bravery, their determination, and their excellence within their field.” Celles de la Terre contacted CREATE! after learning that we received a Gender Just Climate Solutions Award at the COP21 negotiations in Paris during December 2015. Adèle, Astrid, and Léa met with CREATE! field technicians and visited the communities of Walo and Darou Diadji.

Touring the garden site

Adèle, Astrid, and Léa also toured Walo’s garden.

As part of their visit, the students interviewed CREATE! field technician Codou Gadji and Aram Nguirane, cooperative group president in Walo. During their discussion, Aram spoke about her reasons for participating in CREATE! training activities. She said, “When I was little, like any ambitious girl, I dreamed of working for my community. My dream is now becoming a reality.” Although she balances raising her six children with managing the village’s agricultural cooperative, Aram is incredibly pleased to be part of Walo’s partnership with CREATE! She adds, “I have seen women in our community become more self-sufficient.”

Interview with Codou

Celles de la Terre will feature the interviews with both Codou and Aram in the forthcoming documentary that they produce about their project.

Codou has always wanted to work with women to help them improve their lives and the lives of their families. She says, “In Senegal, women must be aware of something: everything that a man can do, a woman can also do. All girls must believe in themselves.” Aram shared a similar sentiment, saying, “Every day, I fight for women to do the same work as men. I shall never cease to do so.” Both women are very proud of their work with CREATE! on behalf of women.

Codou concluded her interview by saying, “I am very optimistic about the future of Senegal. The future holds many things. Women know that they can help the development of their country.”

Read more about Celles de la Terre and see more interview photos here: