FEBRUARY, 2021

Caravan to Class has just selected its second cohort of Bourse Jackie scholarship recipients. The Bourse Jackie scholarship is a very selected award given to female high school graduates from Timbuktu, Mali, for a 4-year scholarship to the public university in Bamako, the capital of Mali. The scholarship includes payment for tuition, books, room & board, and transportation. In addition, the scholarship provides for a 3-month intensive English program in nearby Ghana. English language skills are fairly rare in Mali, and an important career differentiator.

View a short video with recipients of the 2020 Caravan to Class Bourse Jackie university scholarship.

From a very competitive applicant pool, Caravan to Class selected ten finalists who recently took an exam administered by Caravan to Class’ partner, the Timbuktu Ministry of Education. The top five scores on this exam received a Bourse Jackie scholarship. We are very pleased to present below the biographies written by the recipients, demonstrating how worthy and deserving they are of this life-changing opportunity provided by Caravan to Class donors.  

Chaya Saleck

Coming from a family of 6 children, 2 girls and 4 boys, with a little sister burnt by fire at the age of 1 ½, but who lives today with this handicap. My father is a repairer of appliances and my mother a housewife in our native city of Timbuktu. I am the daughter of Assaleck Chabane and Hausa Baba Cissé. The generating activities of the family are linked to everyday life. Often my father can go days without having a radio to repair. For my mother, we go from market to market to sell her cassa balls (food). We live from the recipes collected the day before to hope that tomorrow will be better. I have the chance to be intelligent. It is a gift from God, so the Bourse Jackie is a great asset for me in order to realize my dream, which is to finish my studies. To study and support my family so that they don't lack for anything. It’s a great chance and an opportunity to be one of the winners, and I’m ready for the challenge of honoring JACKIE’s memory.  

Fatoumata Alassane Maïga

I am Fatoumata Alassane Maïga, born on 31-12-2001 in Bori, a village of Timbuktu where I entered school for the first time in the 1st grade at the Mohamed Aguissa school in Bori. I am never disappointed with school. I got my D.E.F. in Bori in 2017 being first in my class for 9 years, I continued my education here in Timbuktu at the private high school ABBA CISSE with the grant from the government. I had the chance to attend a private school where I received “honors” for the first time in my life. I became motherless in 2008. My father is a farmer who goes on trips to Dakar, Senegal in search of income opportunities that are slow in coming. He sends some money when he can by season or per quarter so I can pay for basic things.

I was admitted to the BAC in 2020 with the good grades and then heard about the JACKIE scholarship where I am now a happy winner. I was in my village when I heard about the competition and the news of my admission. If I had not won the competition, going to college was going to be very difficult for me because my aunt is retired. But now my aunt will have less of a load.  

Nana Fatouma Djenné

I am Nana Fatouma Djenné and was born on November 4, 2002 in Timbuktu, daughter of Diahara and Dramane. I live with my family in the Hamanbangou district of Timbuktu. I am a student who experienced financial difficulties in my school career, I had to quit school a few times because I could not afford the reading books in primary school and I had to take private lessons despite the lack of means in the middle school. In high school I had to quit several times because I had no school clothes. Despite all this I remained strong and calm. I believe in the future and I made it my goal to fight for what I want, to work very hard in school, to find a good job and to end this misery. At home, we live without water or electricity, a house in a bad state. We feed on what God gives us in all modesty. I did primary school in BAHADOU, I obtained my BAC at the Mahamane Alassane Haïdara high school in Timbuktu. I am pretty straightforward, I am happy with what life offers me. That doesn't mean I'm not ambitious either. It's just that I do with what I have in the hope of getting more like I do today with this new opportunity before me. I hate lies, violence, and hypocrisy. I like reading, justice and discovering new things like new cultures. I started hairdressing and crocheting wool to be able to meet some of my needs. I believe that a job well done and hard work leads to human moral and intellectual satisfaction.  

Nana Goumo Ascofaré

Born in 2003 in Timbuktu, famous city of 333 saints, I am a young girl admitted to the 2020 Malian baccalaureate in the Exact Sciences series at the Mahamane Alassane Haïdara High School in Timbuktu. Originally from Timbuktu, I am one of the girls in this city who despite social realities, I have devoted enough time and energy to studying. Dynamic, brilliant, intelligent after my D.E.F. I decided to go into science despite my penchant for literature. For me, this course will allow me to realize my biggest dream, that of becoming a building engineer. I draw this inspiration from my uncle because since I was little I saw him shaping the architectural plan of houses in Timbuktu. One day while chatting with him, he showed me all the complexity, thoroughness and importance of this job while telling me of the challenge that access to such a profession poses for women. This discussion made me think a lot about not only learning engineering but practicing it while allowing other women to have equal opportunities and rights. From my young age, I cultivated an unparalleled sense of feminism in me. Not very talkative but very methodical, I intend to start my studies in the field of civil engineering. Around me, I continue to instill in other girls the importance of studying. Freshly admitted, I launched myself for the JACKIE Grant competition which I consider to be an exceptional opportunity. In addition to being qualified, I learned that girls, wherever they are and whatever they go through, deserve additional support and guidance in their university studies in order to build a stable and lasting professional career. The JACKIE Scholarship of which I am proudly a recipient will allow me to be among the girls who will learn and become, impact and flourish in life.  

Mouna Bocar

I am Mouna Bocar, born June 04, 2000, in Timbuktu from a poor family of a mason father and a housewife mother. We live on the solidarity of my two parents to be able to meet the needs of my family. I did my primary school here in Timbuktu at the Mahamane Fondogoumo school in Abaradjou. Outside of school hours I walk around with my mother's condiments/foods and various objects on my head to sell. I sometimes go door to door the whole morning or the evening with only a product that costs barely 7500f (USD 15) with an income of less than 1500f (USD 3) which exposes me to all the dangers on the street. With the crisis (2012) we moved to Mauritania precisely to the Bassoukouna refugee camp and I came back to continue my studies at Garba Maïga high school where I obtained my BAC. I am passionate about studies and I seize all the opportunities that are offered to me. Therefore, this JACKIE scholarship competition which will be for me a great asset and a great privilege to honor the memory of the lady in the person of JACKIE who lives through us. Our success will honor her memory.

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