Women helping women, from Agassiz to Mali

Agassiz-based Teryia group raising funds for shea butter makers in Mali

Six years ago, Earla Legault wouldn’t have been able to point to Mali on a world map. She was, however, familiar with the music of the African country.

But it wasn’t long before she and a few other locals became immersed in all things Malian, from the music to education and to the struggles that women there face. They called their group Teryia, which means friendship in Bambara — the native language of Mali. Its purpose was, and still is, to connect Malian women with Canadian women. And what began as a “twinning” project, Legault says, has evolved into a connection that is helping the Malian women thrive.

They communicate regularly, and the women’s progress in Mali is well documented.

And on Feb. 22, Teryia will host a Malian Music and More film night in an effort to further assist their friends across the world. The public is invited to come out and learn more about the project.

They will show the film The Road to Baleya, which was created by Toronto filmmaker Bay Weyman and follows Canadian musicians as they travel through Bali.

The film gives a brief glimpse of life in Mali, Legault says, and with knowledge comes understanding.

“One of the many hardships that came with the recent situation in northern Mali was the Islamist extremist’s banning of all music,” she says. “It was explained to us, that for Malians this was like taking away part of their soul.”

The musical portion of the evening will be introduced by Harrison Festival Society general manager Ed Stenson, who has considerable knowledge of Malian music and will be sharing that with the audience.

Guests will also learn about the shea butter project that sustains the women involved with Teryia in Mali.

Making shea butter is a livelihood of the Malian women in this commune. They would like to financially support their families and community, and this depends on their shea butter production. The women here in Agassiz use the funds donated to purchase nut grinders, making it more feasible for the Malian women to support their families. The Malian women are keen entrepreneurs, and fundraise for their grinders as well.

So far, Teryia has raised enough money to purchase three grinders, two of which are already in use.

To learn more about the project, visit teryia.wordpress.com, or attend the film night.

The film night is by donation, and will be held at Agassiz United Church.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m. with the film starting at 7 p.m.

There will be Malian refreshments, drumming and a cultural display.

news@ahobserver.com

Just Posted

(Adam Louis/Observer)
PHOTOS: Students leap into action in track events at Kent Elementary

At Kent Elementary, when the sun’s outside, the fun’s outside. The intermediate… Continue reading

Kindergarten kids from Evans elementary school in Chilliwack painted rocks with orange hearts and delivered them to Sto:lo Elders Lodge recently after learning about residential schools. (Laura Bridge photo)
Kindergarten class paints rocks with orange hearts in Chilliwack for local elders

‘Compassion and empathy’ being shown by kids learning about residential schools

Chilliwack potter Cathy Terepocki (left) and Indigenous enhancement teachers Val Tosoff (striped top) and Christine Seymour (fuchsia coat), along with students at Vedder middle school, look at some of the 500-plus pinch pots on Thursday, June 10 made by the kids to honour the 215 children found at Kamloops Indian Residential School. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Chilliwack students make hundreds of tiny clay pots in honour of 215 Indigenous children

‘I think the healing process has begun,’ says teacher about Vedder middle school project

Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay
Webinar looks at sexual abuse prevention among adolescents

Vancouver/Fraser Valley CoSA hosts free online session on June 15

One person was transported to hospital with minor injuries following a two-vehicle crash on Hot Springs Road June 10. (Adam Louis/Observer)
One hurt following two-vehicle crash on Hot Springs Road

Agassiz Fire Department, B.C. Ambulance Service attended with RCMP

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

Most Read