The Audace Institute Afrique believes that freedom is the solution to poverty which was the message of their 2019 Caravan to five different towns in the Ivory Coast in May 2019. There was an emphasis on the responsibility that citizens must take in building a better society. The workshops started with participants being asked to talk about the difficulties they face and to identify solutions. Initially all the suggested solutions were for government action.
Then there was a discussion about the failure of the state to help them so far and they were asked to look for solutions without the state whereupon the participants began to suggest liberal solutions themselves.
A total of 514 took part, 324 men and 190 women and including 2 radio broadcasts the ideas reached over 15,000 people.
The event in Aboisso was broadcast on the main local radio in that area with about 10 people coming in person from the local villages. The stop at Man took place in the University Gueu Pascal with around 100 students taking part. In Daloa there was an excellent turnout despite a general strike.
In Korhogo the hall that had been booked for many weeks was suddenly cancelled in favour of the International Monetary Fund so the disappointed students set about finding another venue themselves. In Bouake the students were determined that the event take place despite day long disruption by the students union and they were all there until the end of the day.
514 took part in person.
2 radio programmes with potential for 15,000 audience.
“I’ve never heard such a message; I never imagined how much the populations and especially young people could be the tools of change. This training is a revolution for us. Metica from Man”
The caravan was not made without difficulties. The greatest difficulty encountered was the disruption in campuses either by strikes, by the non-cooperation of univer- sity administrations or even by the powerful, politicized student unions.
We also had an unkind control of our bus on the way to Korhogo by the police men at a corridor that damaged our computer.
“This caravan has allowed this youth from rural areas, neglected by training pro- grams that flood the only capital of the country, to be aware of how their propos- als can be strong. The participatory workshops enabled them to drawn their own priorities for development in order to provide contextual solutions outside the government intervention.”