The Association specialized in manuscripts preservation and valorization for the defense of Islamic culture (SAVAMA-DCI) was created on November 27, 1996. This initiative was motivated by a distress call putting an accent on the way manuscripts are held in families and the  absence of specialized and organizational structures to support these family libraries.

This fact has motivated the owners of manuscripts to work together in order to establish an association to carry their voices everywhere and to serve as a support element in the socio-economic and cultural development through the sector of manuscripts.

The SAVAMA-DCI became an NGO by signing an  Agreement on June 10, 2005 with the Government of the Republic of Mali.  This agreement has been renewed in December 2007 under the number 083/02133  but the NGO pursues the same goals: preserving and enhancing old manuscripts for the defense of the Islamic culture.


Geographic areas of the SAVAMA-DCI activities:

The NGO acts at the national level and its activities are enlarged to the whole country but its office is in Timbuktu.

Intervention fields:


All the fields dealing with the preservation and enhancement of the written heritage and culture: conservation, cataloging, research, education and training...

Overall objective:

To contribute to the protection, preservation and valorization of old manuscripts and cultural as integral part of the socio economic development of Mali.

Specific objectives:

  • To contribute to createan institutional environment which favorsthe promotion of ancient manuscripts
  • Toimprove the knowledge, recognition and sharing of the written heritage
  •  Topromote the introduction of elements of the corpus in the school and university curricula at the local, national, regional and international level
  • Tocontribute to the promotion of socio-economic activities such as arts industry, crafts and cultural tourism.
  • Tocontribute to the development of  activities related to the digital preservation of ancient manuscripts
  • Tosupport scientific research around the corpus
  • Tosupport efforts for sustainable development of scholarship as illustrated by ancient manuscripts.

Approaches and policy:


The policy of the SAVAMA-DCI is based on interventions at the level of libraries. This ensures a greater impact on:

  • The state of conservation of manuscripts by providing a better framework for their protection and making their access easier;
  • Reinforcement of the NGO staff of workers and manuscripts owners’ capacity (ability and skills) in the management and acquisition of techniques and experiences in the field of manuscripts preservation, conservation and exploitation.
  • Supporting research initiatives and critical editions of manuscripts giving an opportunity for academics: researchers, teachers to work on manuscripts;
  • Supporting initiatives promoting the fields tourism, arts and culture based on manuscripts

Organization chart :