Fellow Since 1997
Manegdbzanga Développement pour Tous
This profile was prepared when Mouni Ouédraogo was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1997.
The New Idea
Working from his own experience as a peasant, Mouni Ouédraogo is changing the way things are perceived among rural Burkinabé and is inspiring a mass movement of female and male peasants to fight against ignorance and poverty. His work can be described as a circular process. It is about community organizing and development based on three core elements and their interactive mutual linkages. The three elements are the acquisition of functional knowledge and skills through literacy, the management of economic and financial activities, and the setting up of institutions. None of the three elements can be effective if the other two are not included and managed efficiently.While Mouni's work begins with literacy, his innovation is not the spread of literacy per se. Rather, he demonstrates how other development issues can be related to literacy and how it can respond to people's needs and bring sustainable change in sanitation, education, economy, and effective local governance that can be replicated elsewhere.