Wolof, Lebou in Mauritania

Wolof, Lebou
Photo Source:  West Africa Gateway 
Map Source:  Anonymous
People Name: Wolof, Lebou
Country: Mauritania
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 1,500
World Population: 235,500
Primary Language: Wolof
Primary Religion: Islam
Christian Adherents: 0.40 %
Evangelicals: 0.00 %
Scripture: New Testament
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Atlantic-Wolof
Affinity Bloc: Sub-Saharan Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

If a person from America or Europe gets into a boat and comes to West Africa, his or her first contact with an African person will most likely be with a Lebou fisherman. The Lebou live in small fishing villages located along the coast of West Africa from Mauritania to Guinea. Their villages are sandwiched between the Atlantic Ocean and the desert. The Lebou people speak Wolof. However, they have their own distinctive dialect that sets them apart from the surrounding, and much larger, Wolof people group.

What Are Their Lives Like?

Modern Lebou still live in fishing villages. However, for many of them, large cities have grown up around them and much of their property has been confiscated for urban development. The "Dakar" Lebou villages, such as N'gor, Oakam, and Yoff, are now incorporated neighborhoods with a city of more than three million people surrounding them. The skyscrapers of downtown Dakar dwarf the towers of their mosques.

The basic diet of the Lebou people consists of fish and rice. A few raise chickens and goats on a limited scale. At the markets, they purchase rice, vegetables and spices. Ceebu-jenn (rice and fish in a rich vegetable sauce) is a favorite Lebou meal. They often compliment this with smoked sea urchins they collect from the rocks along the coast.

The Lebou are fond of attaya, the Senegalese tea. They serve this tea in three rounds. The first is strong and bitter. The second is slightly sweeter and sometimes has mint in it. The third is very sweet with lots of mint. The tea ceremony reflects friendship. The longer we are friends, the sweeter our friendship grows.

For recreation, the Lebou enjoy storytelling, dancing and wrestling. They also look forward to all social occasions such as baptisms, weddings, and any other times they can join as a community. The Lebou people are quick with a joke or a prank. An afternoon spent in their homes is an enjoyable experience.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Lebou Wolof are solidly Muslim. They are unlikely to consider their need for a sin-free Savior until the Holy Spirit speaks to their hearts. They look to the spirit world to help them with their daily needs.

What Are Their Needs?

Like all peoples in West Africa, the Lebou need better schools and hospitals.

Prayer Points

Pray for more schools, hospitals and roads for the Lebou Wolof people.
Pray for them to thrive economically as a testimony of God's power and mercy.
Pray for an unstoppable movement to Christ among every Wolof people group this decade.
Pray for Lebou Wolof disciples to make more disciples.

Text Source:   Joshua Project