The Fondo Ka’ti comes to Cape Town

12 March 2012

At the end of last year, the director of the Fondo Ka’ti, Ismael Diadié Haidara spent 10 very productive and intense days in Cape Town with the Tombouctou Mss Project.  This was part of our on-going collaboration with the Fondo Ka’ti Library based on common research and publication interests.  The work done by Ismael Diadié Haidara and his staff is at quite an advanced stage and we hope to see some joint publications by the end of this year.  We’ll keep you updated of course.


The Fondo Ka’ti has developed a novel way of raising funds for the task of conserving, digitizing and cataloging manuscripts. “Sponsor a Manuscript” is an initiative that was launched several years ago in Spain and was revived during the visit to Cape Town.  Individuals or institutions can fill out a sponsorship form with their details and commit a certain annual amount towards a manuscript.  The Fondo Ka’ti staff will then report on which manuscript has been sponsored, giving details such as title, author and composition date if known, along with a picture.  This is a creative way of raising funds in an environment where even the smallest amount can make a big difference.
If you are interested in sponsoring a manuscript please download the attached form and correspond directly with the Fondo Kati (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)).

Another interesting project begun by Ismael in Cape Town was the “Prayer for Timbuktu” initiative, which arose out of his pain and frustration after the kidnappings and murder of foreigners in Timbuktu in November of 2011. After visiting Robben Island and being inspired by South Africa’s struggle history, Ismael wrote a letter to Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu asking for support for his prayer for peace.  Tutu responded giving his support and from there the initiative has spread widely.  Prayers in mosques, churches and synagogues have been held in Mali and elsewhere and the ‘prayer chain’ continues.  In light of the recent Tuareg uprising in the North of Mali and the subsequent displacement of thousands of refugees the initiative seems just as relevant today.  For more information you may contact Ismael directly via email (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)).


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