VOICES Conference in Bamako 23 April 2013
Tuesday 23 of April 2013 the final Conference of the m-Agro Knowledge Sharing pilot of the VOICES project was celebrated in Bamako, at the Azalaï Salam Hotel.
The event was attended by 71 representatives from farmer organizations, community radio stations, NGOs, international donor organizations, local ICT businesses, telecom operators, the Malian Ministry of Communication and the Ministry of Agriculture, universities, the national broadcast service ORTM and others organizations. The deputy Minister of Comminication solemnly opened the Conference. Speeches by Mary Allen (Sahel Eco) and Stephane Boyera (Web Foundation) introduced all attendants to the history of the VOICES project, and its objectives.
Stephane Boyera introduced the topic of voice-based technologies for illiterate people that allows them to improve communication, create and share content, using only
A presentation by two honey producing farmers from the Tominian region, Mr. Zakary Diarra and Mrs. Naomi Dembelé in Bambara language, witnessed the advantages of the RadioMarché service from a very personal perspective. The two farmers have noticed an increase in their sales, due to the RadioMarché service. RadioMarché helps them to find new customers. Zakary and Naomi were involved from the very start in co-creation activities for the design and implementation of RadioMarché. Naomi and Zakery only have simple mobiles and do not speak french. Naomi says that most women farmers in her village do not read or write.
After lunch all participants were invited to brainstorm in small groups (6-8 people) about the future use, advantages and constraints of voice-based services in support of rural communities in Mali. The results of all group discussions were presented in a plenary session.
A Malian article in french about this Conference.