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African Sky Update: The Plan Forward
January 29, 2013
by Scott Lacy

My Dear Friends,

I recently returned from Mali, where I visited the new school our team built in Soumabougou. Given the French intervention on January 11, I want to share some resources to stay informed, as well as some updates on our work in the coming year.

The Unfolding Crisis in Mali
Earlier this month, the French military entered Mali to secure the capital city and to confront anti-government forces who attempted to expand their territory beyond northern Mali. As of late January, the French and Malian militaries have reclaimed key cities like Gao, Douentza, Tombouctou (Timbuktu), and Diabaly. The political chaos along with the war in the north are unpredictable and intrinsically complex. For that reason, I'll spare you my personal analysis and instead I will suggest several trustworthy sources for news on the Mali crisis.

Here are a few links that I find helpful:  
Journalist Peter Tinti - http://ptinti.com
Al-Jazeera, Africa - http://www.aljazeera.com/news/africa/
IRIN News - http://www.irinnews.org

The Plan Forward
The plan forward is simple: keep doing what we are already doing. That said, we will be prepared to provide assistance however we can as Malians work together to rebuild their communities and nation. We have completed the construction of our Soumabougou school! Given the uncertainties of the political and military chaos in Mali, however, for the time being, our construction operations will be restricted to southern Mali (Sikasso and Koulikoro regions). This strategy will keep our personnel closer to their families. An additional precaution we have taken was to purchase 2.5 metric tons of grain for a cereal bank for our partner communities, to avoid the impending inflation as grain prices are already significantly increased.

"African Sky is a social profit organization working to lessen the effects of extreme poverty in Mali."

Our ability to continue operations is a testament to our Malian leadership, particularly Yacouba Sangare, Oumar Samake, and Tamba Traore (to name a few). On behalf of Yacouba, Oumar, Tamba, and many more Malian friends, I thank you for your support. If you ever have an idea or question for me, please let me know africansky.lacy@gmail.com.

Spread Love,

Scott Lacy
Executive Director
African Sky