The theory in Charente-Maritime, the practice in Senegal

In a Senegalese village, pupils from an agricultural college in Charente-Maritime are rolling up their sleeves to help villagers establish a water supply and grow their own vegetables.

Humanitarian and Development

M'Bassis (Region of Fatick), Senegal

Alain Berton

5,000 € to the Selection Committee at 2004/11/30

Project leader


« This initiative combines several aspects. It has a humanitarian role through the creation of the vegetable garden as well as control of water quality and the depth of wells. But there is also an educational benefit for villagers not to mention an economic one, since two jobs will be created. Finally, this project requires significant input from French students who are ready to go beyond fundraising and really get involved on the ground. »

Alain Berton

For the past two years, the Alesa association founded by students at the Georges Desclaude agricultural college in Saintes (17) has been working with the NGO Sud-Ouest sans frontière and the Caritas branch of the Senegalese town of Kaolack. Its activities are focused on the village of M'Bassis in the Fatik region where students apply theory learned in class to practical problems in partnership with the women's committee, the hygiene committee and school teachers.

Planting and watering

Thus at the end of January 2005, thirteen students studying for higher technician diplomas in agriculture and water management will travel to M'Bassis accompanied by two college lecturers. They will set about planting fruit trees and installing an irrigation system for the school's vegetable garden in liaison with villagers. The aim is design a water-supply system offering long-term reliability, in terms of both quality and quantity, on the basis of an in-depth study of the village's water resources. The 5,000 euros provided by the Veolia foundation will enable the vegetable garden to be established.