Mali: and a tale of the important stuff

I've been spending a lot of time in Mali these days.  It's not tourism or shopping -- it's my job. I work in the international humanitarian aid sector, a 25 year long career that has taken me to many countries, like this one and this one.  But these days, it's Mali. Mali is an African country that has it's fair share of problems.   It's one of the poorest countries in the world, and it's also one the most unsafe.  

Lately, I have been in Mali working on a USAID-funded health program.  The program seeks to reduce maternal mortality rates and improve child survival.  I work with a very talented team of medical doctors, and every day is a sobering reminder of the important stuff.  

As a mother (and a human being), everywhere i go in Mali, whether it's a community health center, a market, or out in the street, my eyes are always drawn to the children.  To their faces.  Each of them waiting, each of them hoping for some kind of shiny future.  

I hope they'll have it.