Notes from the field: Introducing our interpretor and community organizer in his own words. I am deeply grateful for his assistance and the expertise and skills he brings to this project! -Christina
Oumar: My name is Oumar Ag Mohamed El Moctar. I was born in Gossi (Region of Timbuktu, Republic of Mali) in 1980 and I am 33 years old. I completed my primary school studies in my village of birth and then in Burkina Faso during the first rebellion in 1995. I attended secondary school in Kayes (South of Mali). I went on to study law at the University of Bamako and finished with a Masters in Private Law in 2005. Unfortunately, like many students from northern Mali, I didn’t have the opportunity to find a job that matched my qualifications. Because of this I returned to my village after my studies and began working with a program called P.C.V.B.G.E. (Project of Protection of Biodiversity and Elephants of Gourma). I worked with this project for four years. On January 1st 2012 I began work with Medecins du Monde – Belgium in Gao to fight malnutrition in nomadic areas. In February of the same year, I became a refugee in Burkina Faso for the second time because of the conflict in Northern Mali. I like art and am also interested in environmental issues, animal protection, and law.