Karen Marx first met Mali-native Abdoul Doumbia in 1998 when she took an African drumming class he was teaching. Later that year, Karen’s class went to Mali to study drumming firsthand, and while they were there, the class visited Abdoul’s home village located in a very remote area. After their visit, Karen was shocked to learn that the villagers were nearly starving due to a severe drought, and she knew she had to do something to help these people not only survive, but thrive. Karen and Abdoul teamed up and started the Mali Assistance Project to implement long-term solutions and get these villagers to a place of self-sufficiency, and have since impacted close to 4,000 people through their efforts.
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