Bushara is an old Andalusian woman’s name and means Good News, which in ancient Spanish was used as Albricias. This is the name of a NGO based in Granada (Spain), which seeks to promote cooperation and development in the Sahel or sub-Saharan Africa, especially in The Gambia.
The vision that sustains the Association is based on three main principles:
- The first is not different from the one that motivates so many NGOs: the realization that, in a world in which so many human beings -especially in Africa and Asia- are victims of injustice and poverty, those of us who live comfortably in the first world have a moral obligation to try to help, even in small measure, those who, if fate had so stated, could have been us.
- The second is that this solidarity cannot be, however, tinged with paternalism or superiority. It must be imbued with a genuine desire to respect indigenous cultures and benefit from each other through dialogue, from the encounter between people.
- The third principle emphasizes the historical connection between Spain –through our Andalusi past- and the countries in the Sahel. The link between Spain and the Maghreb -Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria- is well known: the extraordinary civilization of Al-Andalus, which illuminated the world from the Iberian Peninsula for centuries, formed a common cultural area with the Maghreb, still visible in many artistic forms and manifested in trade and the flow of people, including the emigration of Andalusians and Moriscos to those lands. What is less known is that this cultural sphere also extended to Sub-Saharan Africa. The manuscripts of Timbuktu –which for centuries preserved in Mali great Andalusi works- are a living sign of this connection, which is still largely unexplored.
Our Main Projects
Since its foundation, Bushara has carried out a series of initiatives and projects in several countries of the Sahel. Since 2012, its activity focuses on The Gambia, around two key projects:
- The construction and monitoring of a school in Kembuye, The Gambia. The school, in its first module, was launched in April 2013. A second module has been virtually completed in 2016. Currently the school has over 500 students, boys and girls.
- Free medical care in Senegambia. This medical care, which began in 2010, is periodically conducted by Spanish doctors and dentists. From the beginning, it has tried to use holistic and preventive medicine, promoting good health habits and trying to connect with the traditional medicine of The Gambia. Recently Bushara has started the project of the construction of a clinic, which will improve this care, and expand it over time.
An explanation of Bushara’s activities in The Gambia (download transcript here):
View the presentation that accompanied the above talk here: