You are here: Why Timbuktu, Mali?
You are here: Why Timbuktu, Mali?

"Providing an education to the children of villages like
Tedeini, outside of Timbuktu, costs less than 1% of what
it costs to educate a child in the United States."

"Providing an education to the children of villages like Tedeini, outside of Timbuktu, costs less than 1% of what it costs to educate a child in the United States."


Image of Tuareg people in the village of Tedeini near Timbuktu, Mali According to the United Nations Human Development index, Mali ranks right at the bottom of a number of indicators including literacy. Nevertheless, Mali is a country rich in historical significance, has some of the world's most interesting cultures, is one of Africa's more politically stable democracies, and boasts some very engaging and hospitable people.

Image of Tuareg people in the village of Tedeini near Timbuktu, Mali
According to the United Nations Human Development index, Mali ranks right at the bottom of a number of indicators including literacy. Nevertheless, Mali is a country rich in historical significance, has some of the world's most interesting cultures, is one of Africa's more politically stable democracies, and boasts some very engaging and hospitable people.

The Camel Caravans

For hundreds of years the camel caravans traversed the Sahara Desert to earn their living through trade. As the caravan trade diminished due to more modern means of transport, and after years of drought and the loss of their herds of cattle and goats, the Tuareg, the nomadic people of the Sahara Desert, were forced to settle down in the villages near Timbuktu in the 1990s. Their children had never known formal school nor has the Malian government invested in building schools in their villages. As a result, Mali is one of the world most illiterate countries (according to the UN Human Development index) with literacy at around 26% and the literacy rate in the villages around Timbuktu is less than 10%.

Education in the Villages around Timbuktu

Caravan to Class, with your help, brings education to these villages. Providing an education to the children of villages like Tedeini, outside of Timbuktu, costs less than 1% of what it costs to educate a child in the United States. For Fadimata and Ataher, this means the difference between spending a full day in school learning with their village mates or toiling in the hot sun doing the chores of the village.

By educating a child in one of the villages where Caravan to Class operates, you not only bring the gift of literacy directly to a child in a village in Africa, but break the cycle of illiteracy in the child’s family and bring hope for the future to the entire village.

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Read the interview with CTC founder Barry Hoffner,  catch up with progress on literacy programs and Caravan-to-Class press releases.

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Video of our work

Caravan to Class video

Drone footage of the Kokonji school newly-built by Caravan to Class in Mali