AS International Women’s Day #IWD2020 approaches, let us introduce you to Bebe & Aminata. Always dressed in the brightly colored melahfas (traditional clothes that some Mauritanian women wear) these two sisters both work as cooks in our local teams. Coming from the South of Mauritania near the Senegal River, they take part in all our trekking expeditions in the Sahara Desert, every week during the season – from November to March.
In Mauritania, women depend on their husbands if they don’t work: a married woman does not have the legal right to manage her property, nor that of her children, without the consent of her husband. Although Mauritanian legislation provides for equal rights with respect to employment, no specific measures have been taken to eliminate discrimination against women, for example guaranteeing equal pay for equal work.
As one of the few travel companies employing women in our caravans, we aim to empower them: their financial independence allows them to choose the life they want to live. For our travellers, sharing one week with them allows a better understanding of Mauritanian society as a whole. Influenced by Arab and African cultures, the Mauritanian cuisine is an overlap of Moroccan and Senegalese cuisines. Thanks to Bebe & Aminata, our travellers are lucky to taste the “Cherchem”, a Mauritanian lamb couscous or to enjoy a Roselle syrup each evening after their hiking day in the desert dunes!