Gold mining in Africa has a bad rap — particularly when it comes to women. In the gold mining belt of Mali, one of the world’s poorest countries, the victimization lens does great injustice to the hundreds of women mining alongside men. Women make up around half the workforce in Mali’s artisanal gold mines.
Women working in the mines would be the first to say that the work is brutal and uncertain. But the money they can make gives women financial autonomy and power that would be unimaginable if they remained in their villages to work on their husbands’ farms.
This day a gold miner presents creations as she takes part in a fashion show as part of the first edition of the International Gold Fair, in Bamako.
The Princess of Burundi Esther Kamatari, selected 34 women among gold mines workers in southern Mali, to walk down the catwalk for a fashion show organized during the International Gold Fair.
The West African country is one of Africa’s biggest gold producers with about 13 mines operated by multinational companies.