Hi, I'm Noura (new-RAH) – Abida's big brother. I'm 16 years old. Abida and I
have another brother, Douda, but he's married and doesn't live with us any
There's no secondary school in our small village of 1,500 people. So nine months
of the year I'm at boarding school in another town, a day's journey away. To
get there I walk 18 kilometres to a village on the main road. Then I pay for a
ride the last 24 kilometres.
Few young people have the opportunity to go to secondary school in Niger, my
country. In fact only 6 out of every 100. So I'm very fortunate. When I finish
school I'd like a government job as an agricultural and livestock worker.
Noura takes care of the family animals
When at home I help look after the family livestock. We have goats, sheep,
chickens, a cow and one horse. If there is grass growing in the pastures, I
take them out to graze and then to the well for water. Other times I bring the
water and grass to the animals. They are kept in the family courtyard, so it's
important to sweep away the manure each day.
The animals are like our family bank account. When we need money for something,
like paying school fees or a family celebration, we sell one of them at the
School holidays happen at harvest time, so students from farms, like me, can go
home and help with the harvest. The millet stalks are cut and stored in the
family grain storage hut. It's called a roumbou.
Noura plays soccer with his friends
To help pay for my school fees and earn money for my family, I run a small store
in the village during my school holidays. I sell things like, sugar, tea,
sweets and matches. I'm 'open' every day. I carry the key around with me
everywhere, and people come and find me if they want something and I'm not
there. My best customers are the young kids buying sweets. On a good day I can
make 1,500 francs (NZ$6).
In my spare time, like most teenagers I hang out with my friends. We talk about
this and that. The problem we face is poverty – very little money to improve
our lives. My dream is to live in Niamey, the capital city of Niger, with my
own house and my own car. My friends and I also enjoy playing football. I like
to ride our horse too when it's not being used for something else.
Find out more about my sister Abida, my mother
Halima, or my father Mallam.