Niger,

my dream

Niger is one of the poorest countries in the world. Women have an average of eight children, men wish for 16. Girls are married with an age of 14. Men are married to several spouses. Abortions are illegal. The suicide rate among women is one of the highest worldwide. 89 percent of the female population are not able to read and write. 

 

Yet what are these women dreaming about? Do they have recurring dreams at night? Are they comforting ones or nightmares. What are their dreams, desires and visions for the future?

My dream.   

 

I dreamed about a dream. 

I heard it’s always by my side. 

Just like a fingerprint, belonging just to me. 

 

I dreamed about a dream.

Yet clear and bright. 

But at the same time rough like my oppressed hands. 

 

I dreamed about a dream. 

But with the first light, 

a glimpse took it away into the dusty streets. 

 

 

I dreamed about a dream. 

Day by night, sunrise to moonrise. 

I stare and stare and touch my kids’ closed eyes. 

Dream of the future

God may bring us a deceased and better future. I am begging for enough money and health for my whole family. My kids shall have a brighter future than I did since I never studied. 

Dream by night

I die. I die and my kids are all alone. I cannot take care of them anymore. My husband, a farmer, needs to take care of them all alone without me. 

 

Salamatou Baubacan

Age: 20

Family status: Married, 5 kids (1 deceased)

Job: Housewife and mother

Location: Kollo (a village close to Niamey)

Dream of the future

We’ll have food and good health.   

Dream by night

None.  

 

Oumou Adamou

Age: 27

Family status: Married, 4 kids (3 deceased)

Job: Housewife and mother

Location: Liburi (a village close to Niamey)

Dream of the future

One day I will marry my boyfriend, who lives in London. I’ll wear a white, flowing wedding dress. A bridal veil. My hair will be beautifully styled. It will be a big party with all of our friends. 

Dream by night

I am having nightmares of big snakes biting me. 

Mariama Mai Moussa

Age: 30

Family status: Unmarried, no kids

Job: Marketing, Air Algier

Location: Niamey (Capital of Niger)

Dream of the future

The most important for me: My kid shall go to school, study and have a bright and good future. 

Dream by night

None. 

 

Roukaya Tahirou

Age: 20

Family status: Married, 1 kid

Job: Student and mother

Location: Kollo (a village close to Niamey)

Dream of the future

Health. 

Dream by night

I cannot remember any dreams. 

Madjo Hamidou 

Age: 80

Family status: Widow, 2 kids (both deceased)

Job: No job 

Location: Kollo (a village close to Niamey)

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