The Caravan for Peace on the roads of Mali
For its 2nd edition, the Caravan for Peace, went to Mali from June 20 to 23 and joined the 4th Edition of the International Sport Forum (FIS) of Bamako, as part of a partnership to promote sport as a tool for development and peace among young people.
Initiated by Champion for Peace Marlène Harnois, Olympic medalist and founder of the Caravan for Peace, and SY Makou Aminata Traoré, President of the FIS, this partnership aims to unite all the actors of the sports movement to foster the creation of synergies, and collectively carry out field actions.
In the presence of the First Lady of the Republic of Mali, H.E. Mrs. Keïta Aminata Maïga, the opening ceremony of the FIS took place on June 20, at the Palais des Sports in Bamako. Panels proposed concrete tools to promote the use of sport as a vector for education, development and social cohesion, in the framwork of the many activities and Martial Arts Night, the next day.
Thus, the two-time world medalist and Champion for Peace Balla Dieye, and Jean-Jérôme Perrin-Mortier, Director of Peace and Sport Field Programs, contributed to the panels and facilitated discussions on the global action of the international, Monaco-based organization. They also proposed to the participants a “Peace through Football” session.
During the “Olympic Day” on June 22, the Caravan for Peace participated in the festivities organized by the Malian Olympic Committee before going to the camp of displaced persons of Niamana to conduct social actions and sports activities for the benefit of young displaced people.
On this occasion, the Association of Olympians of Mali, chaired by Abdoulaye Traoré, organized “Sport Simple” athletics workshops with hedges built from cardboard, the double Taekwondo European Champion Marlene Harnois and Balla Dieye organized a demonstration of Taekwondo, Peace and Sport set up a “Peace Through Football” session. The Association for the Promotion of Youth and Sport (APJS), which contributes greatly to the organization of this first edition of the Caravan for Peace in Mali supervised sports activities. The day ended with a collective #WhiteCard picture, the symbol of the peace-through-sport movement, and the donation of essential products to the displaced persons.
The Caravan for Peace and its partners went to the village of N’Tola, 170 km north-west of Bamako on 23 June, to animate peace-through-sport activities to bring together the inhabitants of the 16 surrounding villages and to contribute to local development. More than 1000 people were expected to participate in the festivities and the Peace Olympics.
For Marlène Harnois: “Driven by the values of Olympism, friendship, solidarity and sharing, the Caravane for Peace is a unifying event that mobilizes youth and contributes to positive change by bringing together many athletes, NGOs, political leaders and mobilizing youth in field actions to promote sport, education, health and sustainable development, while providing support to people affected by precariousness. ”
For SY Makou Aminata Traoré, President of the FIS and twice African Taekwondo Champion: “the International Sport Forum of Bamako must allow through many exchanges to strengthen the place of sport as a tool for dialogue and social cohesion. ”
The goal of the Caravan for Peace is to promote peace, sport and education to foster gender equality and to contribute to development. Founded in 2017 by Olympic medalist Marlene Harnois, the Caravane for Peace is organized in partnership with Peace and Sport. During the 1st edition, organized in Senegal in 2017, sports events were supervised by Champions for Peace Ladji Doucouré, Daba Modibo Keita and Balla Dieye, actions against HIV / AIDS and screenings were organized by the CNLS and a drinking water fountain was inaugurated in the village of Keur Massamba. Since its creation, the Caravane for Peace has been supported by the Didier Drogba Foundation, Golden Blocks sponsored by Ladji Doucouré, the Daba Modibo Keita Association, the CNOSS, the CNLS and the Champions of Peace.
The 4th edition of the Bamako International Sports Forum, under the patronage of Mrs. KEITA Aminata MAIGA, First Lady of the Republic of Mali, brings together sports federations and associations, international organizations, private and institutional partners, sponsors, amateurs and sports professionals around the table to discuss the opportunities offered by sport while assessing their real impact on the development.