Mali: Strengthening children and youth groups and networks for child protection


Project title: Civil society and state representatives involved in child protection are strengthened, work efficiently and are part of a countrywide network


Project regions: Bamako, Koulikoro, Ségou and San in Mali


Duration: 1st Dec. 2020 – 30th Nov. 2023


Local partner: GRADEM (Groupe  de Recherche Action Droits de l'Enfant Mali)


Local civil society groups in Mali are very active in neighborhoods or villages for the protection and rights of children. They include women's associations, cooperatives and numerous children and youth groups. The groups contribute to ensuring that children are protected from violence, exploitation, child trafficking etc. or receive support when in need.


Although these grassrots groups do valuable work in their local communities, in particular in terms of raising awareness on children's rights, the impact of their work is diminished or limited to the local level by various factors. These include a lack of opportunities for children and youth to participate in the development of issues regarding their rights. Moreover, the political conflict in the north of Mali, which is spreading to the central region, is fueling fear, mistrust and everyday conflicts among the population – with direct effects on the situation of children.


The project strengthens the work of the children and youth groups in the project area and makes their work structures more child friendly. It also aims to strengthen the professionalism and cooperation of these groups as well as their opportunity participate in consultation and decision-making processes on issues that directly concern them.

Project objectives

General objective (impact):      

Children's and youth groups, together with adult child protection agents, contribute to more effective protection of the rights of children in Mali.


Project objective (outcome):

In Bamako and in the regions of Koulikoro, Ségou and San, a total of 100 children's and youth groups are professionalising their work with the support of 300 adult state and civil society agents.


Specific objectives (output):

  1. 5,000 children, as well as 200 civil society actors and 100 state actors have specific knowledge and implementation competences regarding national standards for the protection of children from violence, exploitation and the most serious forms of child labor.
  2. In each project region, 25 children's and youth groups are aware of the benefits of working together and with other child protection agents to promote and implement children's rights and can put this into practice.
  3. Those responsible and members of 100 children's and youth groups in the project region are able to work for a children’s rights protecting environment even in conflict situations.
  4. The local partner GRADEM has strengthened its competences and is building a long-term presence in another project region of Mali.

Target groups of the project

Direct target group:


5,300 activists (mainly children and adolescents) from the project area, including:

  • 4,000 pupils who are members of a children or youth group,
  • 1,000 girls who work as domestic servants in Bamako and do not attend school
  • 200 adult leaders of children and youth groups
  • 100 state child protection actors


100 groups of children, youth and women, including:

  • 59 groups of children in schools in rural communities
  • 31 Women's or youth associations with a sub-group for household servants
  • 10 pioneer groups


Indirect target group:

  • the population of the project area, so a total of almost 13 million people

Key project activities

  • Training program for the various target groups, on topics such as responsible citizenship and peaceful conflict resolution through mediation and dialogue
  • Accompanying children and youth groups for introducing an internal child protection policy
  • Promoting networking and cooperation between children and youth groups and with other civil society organizations at regional and national level
  • Promoting the participation of children and youth groups in the meetings of regional consultation bodies and their participation in thematic working groups of the bodies
  • Supporting and professionalizing the work of the regional consultation bodies as well as of the national coalition for child protection (COMADE)
  • Awareness-raising 


Project costs: € 480,700


Financial partners:

  • German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation du Development (BMZ)
  • The foundation Familie-Haas-Stiftung
  • Kinderrechte Afrika e. V. (KiRA), that is donations

Picture above: Presentation by a children's group for awareness raising on children's rights. © GRADEM


Sparkasse Offenburg/Ortenau

Kinderrechte Afrika e. V.



DE69 6645 0050 0076 0040 44

Kinderrechte Afrika e. V.

Schillerstraße 16

D-77933 Lahr


Tel.: 07821/38855

Fax: 07821/985755


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