DESCRIPTION OF THE PROJECT
When Món-3 took on the Walata Development Project in 2001 the
NGO established the basis on which all the subsequent activities foreseen
for improving the city and its subsequent launching as a place of
tourist interest would turn.
To start with, priority was given to encouraging the people
who in the long run were to be the chief protagonists and beneficiaries
of the project—that is, the inhabitants of Walata—to identify
with it. To achieve this, support was given first and foremost to
the creation of a farming cooperative and to the promotion of the
Citizens' Committee for the Development of Watala, which aims to emphasise
the city's historical and cultural wealth and encourage a feeling
of unity amongst the people in charge of the programme and the people
It was also considered indispensable that a new strategy of economic
promotion should be organised that included a variety of initiatives:
- reorientating farming in Walata,
diversifying crops and reserving production for self-subsistence
and for the local market.
- giving priority to the city's tourist sector and attaching a
special value to its culture and to its natural surroundings.
This is what will make it possible to include Walata on social and cultural tourist circuits,
while at the same time respecting local assets.
- replacing the idea of rehabilitating the city's material
heritage with that of recovering
the cultural heritage in its broadest sense.
As a result
of this innovatory strategy, Món-3 is taking on two projects:
the recovery and preservation of Walata's cultural heritage and
its tourist development. It is estimated that 65% of the population
(including the urban and the semi-nomadic populations) can benefit
from the work of this NGO in this Mauritanian city: artisans, farmers,
guides and owners of camels, amongst others.