Income Growth and Women’s Empowerment Through Enhancing Local Knowledge on Plants. The Case of Women Herbalists in the Bamako District, Mali

Rokia Sanogo, Sergio Giani


The article presents the experiences of supporting women herbalists in the district of Bamako (Mali) carried out by Aidemet NGO since 2005. This was the provision of kiosks for the orderly storage and proper display of medicinal plants, as well as training and monitoring activities. Survey results show that the monthly income of herbalist women who received the kiosks is 38% higher than of those who did not. The analysis of life stories and testimonies of herbalist women shows that the introduction of kiosks has enabled them to improve their working conditions, their incomes and the quality of plants sold to customers, simultaneously reducing pressure on natural resources. At the same time, support measures have improved the self-image of the medicinal plant vendors and the perception of the importance of their work with clients, their families and community.


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women's empowerment; herbalist women; medicinal plants; local economic development; Bamako; natural resources

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