The various Wolof kingdoms were destroyed in the takeover. However, one people, the Serer, consistently rejected the takeover in central and western Senegal. The Serer are a farming people and are known for their blacksmithing skills.
Senegal became independent on August 20, 1960, a year after its foundation as a republic. The first president was Léopold Sédar Senghor, who had already fought for the country’s freedom under the French colonial administration. He presented the country with a new constitution in 1963 and, after vocal demands, carried out numerous democratic reforms in the years that followed. Since the last elections in 2012, the government has been taken over by the rap musicians “Y’en a marre,” which means “We’re fed up.” They have managed to make the internationally known musician Youssou N’Dour the minister of education in today’s Senegal.
Senegal has few mineral resources. As a result, there is little industry in Senegal except for textile and food processing companies. Most people work in agriculture. Therefore, agriculture is a natural livelihood for the rapidly growing population and employs over two-thirds of the Senegalese. Smallholder farms grow millet, rice, cassava, potatoes, vegetables and cotton for subsistence. However, droughts, overgrazing and soil erosion pose particular challenges to the Senegalese and lead to reduced yields, leaving the country’s population unable to feed itself. Therefore, some food products have to be imported. Mainly from Nigeria, for example, fish, fish products and peanuts are imported.
It is not only the individuals who suffer from too few well-educated people, but also the country’s infrastructure, as there are also often not enough jobs for specialists. Africa GreenTec tries to empower people and to play a supporting role in building an infrastructure. That’s why we are moving our production facility to Dakar to create more local jobs. Our first Cooltainer ‘made in Africa’ has already been put into operation in the Senegalese village of N’diob (if you want to know more about N’diob, check out the other articles on our ImpactBlog).
Overall, Senegal has great potential, due to the steadily growing population, a large part of which is under 20 years old. The problem remains that many people are not offered the chance to develop their own and the communities’ potential. The chance to find work in their own village and thus not having to flee to the big cities for a job is often not given due to a lack of electricity and cooling infrastructure as well as too few economic opportunities. We at Africa GreenTec want to support the individual cultures of the Senegalese. We want to support the people, whether they are farmers, technicians or school children, in their activities and help them to achieve more self-determination.
The Africa GreenTec Team in Senegal