Grandmother Project

About the Project

This project is one of the 2022 WISE Awards finalists. 


Context and Issue 

Kolda region, far from the capital, is one of the least developed, with lower primary and secondary school completion rates, especially for girls. Communities have deep-rooted cultural-religious values and often view the school as a foreign institution where values they cherish are not taught.  There is widespread national concern with the loss of cultural identity and values.


Solution and Impact

In partnership with the Ministry of Education (MOE) GMP implements a values education program in 60 schools and communities (55 rural and 5 urban) with 269 teachers, impacting 9,400 students and involving 300 grandmothers – an indigenous resource for education.  Public and Catholic schools are involved, and very soon Islamic-French schools.  The unique program, Integrating Positive Cultural Values into Schools (IPCVS), is coordinated by Mamadou Coulibaly, GMP Program Manager in Senegal. He is from Velingara, a teacher by profession who worked as a teacher and then supervisor/manager in the District Education Office (DEO) for 15 years. He has a Master’s degree in Local Development. 

GMP initiated the IPCVS program with the DEO in 2010 with development of values education teacher training, materials for teachers and students and teacher-grandmother workshops to create a bridge between tradition and modernity.  An external assessment of IPCVS documented various positive outcomes including increased student performance and community-school relationships. Local DEO officials strongly support IPCVS.


Future Developments 

IPCVS influenced  the national decision to make values education a top priority in the current MOE five-year plan. GMP, DEO and the MOE hope to expand the strategy within Kolda Region and into other regions.



May 19, 2022 (last update 09-15-2022)