Ashoka Sahel Fellows

Ashoka Fellows are leading social entrepreneurs who we recognize to have innovative solutions to social problems and the potential to change patterns across society. They demonstrate unrivaled commitment to bold new ideas and prove that compassion, creativity, and collaboration are tremendous forces for change. Ashoka Fellows work in over 70 countries around the globe in every area of human need.

Country: Senegal
Field of Work: Civic Engagement

Senegalese poet Thierno Seydou Sall is developing a method of modern social communications that is rooted in African culture's deep oral tradition.

Country: Mali
Field of Work: Economic Development

Souleymane Sarr seeks to create what he calls "the new generation" of artisans in Mali. He's training artisans, unemployed school graduates and street youth, to create and produce consumer goods services in clear market demand. In the process he's revolutionizing the traditional creativity stifling apprenticeship system.

Country: Senegal
Field of Work: Human Rights

Binta Sarr is creating a new generation of female leaders in Senegal. Through her organization, a team of rural women provide essential services and leadership training to their poor, marginalized counterparts.

Country: Senegal
Field of Work: Civic Engagement

By introducing locally developed and operated technologies for domestic waste disposal, Oumar Sarr (Senegal 1996) is creating a "virtuous cycle" of environmental education andcommunity action that begins in the household with the sorting of waste and leads to recycling, alternative waste disposal, new community-based enterprise activity and a widening range of local...

Country: Burkina Faso
Field of Work: Economic Development

In a context where farmers’ inability to store produce after harvest unnecessarily leads to a “hungry season,” Lassané Savadogo has created an affordable and effective storage practice that is allowing families to not only feed themselves year round, but to earn incomes double what is common during the off season. 

Country: Senegal
Field of Work: Health

Female genital mutilation (FGM) is a common practice in West Africa that often causes serious physical and psychological complications. Marianne Sidibe reforms Senegalese health care and creates new systems of support to meet the needs of girls and women who have undergone this destructive procedure.

Country: Burkina Faso
Field of Work: Economic Development

Antoine Sombié has created Association Wouol, the first regional-scale, commercial hybrid value chain that joins European businesses with small local women’s vegetable and fruit producers from across West Africa. Antoine’s program focuses on expanding and legitimizing organically certified food by creating health incentives for local farmers, and developing economic...

Country: Burkina Faso
Field of Work: Economic Development

While numerous efforts have been made to respond to the spread of HIV/AIDS in Burkina Faso, most of these strategies fail to effectively address the emotional trauma and economic stress that HIV-positive people endure. Women face a particularly difficult burden, and Martine Somda is working to lessen that burden by helping women gain employment opportunities and play a...

Country: Senegal
Field of Work: Civic Engagement

Journalist and long-time women's rights activist, Fatoumata Sow is creating a community radio station which addresses the educational and development needs of women in Senegal and broadcasts from their perspective. The station will demonstrate how other citizens' groups can use radio for civic education, and it is capable of reaching constituents throughout the region...

Country: Senegal
Field of Work: Economic Development

Inspired by the global open source movement and Africa’s traditional emphasis on interdependence, Karim Sy is providing an online and offline meeting space where young African entrepreneurs can collaborate—rather than compete—to create new businesses and help solve some of their countries toughest problems.