Who lives there?
There are a number of people groups that stretch across country borders in West Africa. One of the most familiar groups for Western readers may be the Moors or Bidhan, known for their expansion into Spain. Another large group in the region are the Mand, who have many sub-groups, but who are united through their strong Islamic beliefs.
What do they believe?
Across Francophone West Africa there are handfuls of local believers, estimated to be between 50-150 in number per country. Whilst there are African and Western missionaries in the area, entire communities in the interior still have no viable Christian witness. The spiritual climate of the area is strongly Islamic, with the Joshua project suggesting that 99.5% follow Islam. However, due to poor infrastructure and low educational levels, young people are growing increasingly disgruntled with life and the lack of governmental action.This has led large numbers of young people to turn to atheism.
What is AIM doing?
In 2021, AIM sent an initial team to this area to explore opportunities, with the result that we are now looking to initiate ministry in West Africa. In many places in Francophone West Africa, traditional mission work is not welcomed by the authorities. However, the economic situation means that there are numerous business and social opportunities for Christian workers to get involved in which have been welcomed by the state. We are looking to partner with churches in the UK and Europe to raise up a team of workers to go and start ministry.