By Sophie C. & Ilhan A., School Girls Unite at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School
School Girls Unite Skypes every Wednesday afternoon with Fatoumata Coulibaly, the president of Les Filles Unies pour l’Education in Mali. We are both of French heritage and are bilingual. When we aren’t busy with our extracurricular activities, we chat online with Fatoumata, who goes to an Internet cafe in Bamako. Since last November our sister organization, which runs our scholarship program started in 2004, has been planning to hold a Day of Awareness about the importance of education of girls in rural Mali. The idea was to bring together students, their parents, teachers, school directors, and government representatives for the first time to the central community of Ouolodo, located 75 km from Bamako. This event had to be postponed twice because of security issues in Mali, but on January 30th, the ceremony was anything but bleak. Between 10am-3pm, there were speeches, eating, singing and dancing!