Why this project is important

by Gift of the Givers

  1. It’s a cultural heritage project

Nowhere in the Islamic world is the memorization of the Quran and sacred texts as prolific as it is in West Africa.  The mahdhara system has been running in Mauritania for hundreds of years: students study a subject text with a teacher; the text is explained and memorised; the text is usually studied in the form of poetry, transmitted orally and delivered individually or in small groups.

Centuries-old Arabic poetry is being transmitted from generation to generation, ultimately preserving an important religious and cultural legacy that is slowing being eroded by modern teaching philosophies and methods.  Preserving this legacy starts with educating women, society’s first teachers.

  1. It’s an educational project for women and girls

Women in Mauritania have always had opportunities to study, especially from their fathers and family members, and have been known to excel in the field of Seerah.  However, changing socio-economic conditions created a need for the establishment of learning centres for women. This institute remains unique as it is one of a few institutes in the country devoted especially to women’s Islamic education.

The Centre for the Mother and Child has been located at the same venue since 2004.  There’s no running water, no toilets, no electricity and the space is too small to accommodate the amount of students for bigger lectures.

  1. It’s an eco-project

A number of eco-friendly principles were included to make this is fully-fledged eco-project. Please read our Eco-building page.

  1. They can start a kindergarten

With the additional space, they plan on opening a much-needed kindergarten for kids. Currently, the few kindergartens in the village are being run informally in dilapidated buildings with no facilities for kids.


  1. It creates a space for skills development

By sponsoring this institution, there will be a space for skills development training for women.