Review of Niger’s Progress Toward the Sustainable Development Goals

by Michelle Nelson von Euw As the five-year anniversary of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) agenda approaches, many nations are beginning to assess whether and how they are achieving these targets and indicators set by the United Nations. To summarize, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is a collection of 17 international development objectives set by… Read more »

The Magic Tree

By Elsa Sichrovsky In a country like Niger that is three-quarters desert[1] and has an eight-month dry season[2], drought is a constant threat. With extremely limited natural resources, aggressive grazing and farming practices take an enormous toll on the environment. Add a rapidly growing population and a strained ecosystem, and the result is food and… Read more »

The Women Revolutionizing Music in Niger

By Caroline Moss Every culture enjoys music regardless of its purpose. Whether it’s a tradition, used to sooth a child, or to tell a story, music is a part of our lives no matter where we live. Culture shapes music, and music undoubtedly influences culture. Music offers an outsider insight into unfamiliar cultures and into the… Read more »

Littattafan Soyayya: The Love Stories Hausa Women are Telling

By Elsa Sichrovsky Almost half of Niger’s population belongs to the Hausa ethnic group, so Hausa language and culture are essential to Niger’s ethnic melting pot. In recent years, a new and exciting genre of Hausa literature has been changing the lives of women in Niger and northern Nigeria. This new literary movement originated in Kano,… Read more »

International Decade for Action on Water for Sustainable Development, 2018-2028

by Michelle Nelson von Euw “Access to water and sanitation is a precondition to life and a declared human right.” – United Nations As evidenced by the frequency with which it appears in the Sustainable Development Goals, access to clean, well-managed water, for both consumption and sanitation, is vital for human development. Any level of… Read more »

Sarraounia Mangou: Niger’s Forgotten Princess

by: Elsa Sichrovsky During the “Scramble for Africa” of the late nineteenth century, where European colonial powers rushed to conquer, and exploit the African continent, a powerful queen emerged: Sarraounia (Hausa for “queen”or “female chief”), leader of the Anza people in Lougou, Niger. Although, French historical documents give little information about this fascinating woman, the information… Read more »

Nigerien Hip-Hop: The Voice of Niger’s Youth

By: Elsa Sichrovsky Although hip-hop music may be widely considered a product of American pop culture, Niger has also produced hip-hop artists of outstanding talent. They use music as a medium to raise awareness for the social issues of their generation. Nigerien hip-hop was indeed heavily influenced by American culture in its early stages[1]. Eventually,… Read more »

The Power of Hope

by Elaine Wallace Psychologists have long been aware of the importance of hope in helping us achieve our personal goals, but hope isn’t just a feel-good emotion that prompts us to work towards a promotion or try to lose a few pounds. According to economists, hope also plays a vital role in reducing world poverty…. Read more »

Bridging the Gap: Empowerment and Education in Niger’s “Husband Schools”

by Hannah Lichtenstein An interesting tension exists in the socio-cultural plane in Niger as it does in many West African countries. Nigerien men generally operate outside of the household as the “breadwinners,” making a living toiling in economic spheres such as agriculture or mining. Women, on the other hand, are the nurturing caretakers, responsible for… Read more »