The working mothers of Benin (includes instruction video: how to strap a baby on your back)

14 March 2010 at 14:04 4 comments

The one income family doesn’t exist in Benin.  Just like their moms and their mom’s moms, Beninese women enter the work force as soon as they’re able and keep going no matter what.  They’ll work through the rain, they’ll work through malaria, they’ll work while pregnant with all of their wares stacked on top of their heads and their children literally strapped to their backs.

For those of you who want to try this at home, here’s one Kiva entrepreneur teaching me the art of baby-strapping (and her amused friends in the background).

Want to do more?  Loan to one of Kiva’s entreprenuer’s in Benin.  Or join the Friends of Benin lending team!

Marie Leznicki is a Kiva Fellow serving her placement with Alidé in Benin.

Entry filed under: Africa, Alidé, Benin, blogsherpa, KF10 (Kiva Fellows 10th Class). Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Video: Follow Your $25 to Vietnam! Maxima “works,” because Maxima WORKS!


  • 1. Fehmeen  |  19 March 2010 at 13:34

    These mothers roam around and work with their children tied to their backs, as well as fronts at times. They have such power and resolve. I fail to understand why they dont get more respect!

  • 2. Jessie Gasch  |  18 March 2010 at 10:10

    Marie! I met you a few weeks ago (I’m the Rotary scholar living in Cotonou) and I’ve lost your phone number! I don’t know if you’ve tried to call me because I don’t answer calls from unfamiliar numbers. E-mail me at jessie dot gasch at gmail dot com and send me your number, if you would. I’m glad I found your blog here. It’s great. Your experiences really resonate with me, and it’s clear you’re doing some great work.

  • 3. George Foreman Rotisseries  |  15 March 2010 at 07:06

    […] The working mothers of Benin (includes instruction video: how to … […]

  • 4. Jan & John, KivaFriends  |  14 March 2010 at 18:13

    Lovely little video. I do love the colours in their fabrics. And you know what I liked best… the fact that that little one was wearing shoes (sandals). I read once that bare feet can cause so many diseases and is a huge sign of poverty. Thanks for sharing… -jan-

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