Bassari in Senegal


Population
Main Language
Largest Religion
Christian
Evangelical
Progress
Progress Gauge

Introduction / History

Most Bassari are concentrated on either side of the Senegal-Guinea border, with several hundred in Guinea-Bissau. The Bassari arrived in the area between the 11th and 19th centuries, establishing their settlements in the hills. These settlements provided defensible vantage points overlooking the plains below and were made up of groups of circular thatched huts congregated around a central space.


What Are Their Lives Like?

Like most of the people of Guinea-Bissau, the Bassari are farmers. Using basic tools, they grow a variety of crops. Maize, manioc and rice are the staples, but they also grow squash, melons, sweet potatoes, peppers, and tomatoes. Major tree crops include bananas, coconuts, mangoes, and papayas. They raise cattle, sheep, and goats, but do not use their milk. Hunting is of less importance than agriculture, but they gather wild fruits and roots, berries, and nuts (kola, shea, and palm).

Men hunt, fish, clear the land, and tend the cattle. The women do the gathering and help with the agricultural work. Chiefs exercise political authority in the villages. Succession usually passes to the next brother or to the oldest son of the deceased chief’s oldest sister.

Bassari people live in extended family compounds, each comprising a cluster of huts usually arranged in a circle around an open space. Often, a hedge, a fence or a wall surrounds the entire compound. The compounds usually adjoin to form compact villages. In general, the dwellings are round with mud walls and cone-shaped, thatched roofs.

The Bassari people circumcise the males and sometimes the females. These practices are part of initiation ceremonies at puberty and typically involve a period of instruction in an isolated "bush school."

They tolerate premarital sexual freedom for girls and prefer cousins as marriage partners. The male’s family pays a bride-price in livestock, commonly pigs. The groom to be usually must provide premarital bride-service to her family. There is very little polygamy (having over one wife). In such cases, however, each wife has her own hut, and the husband spends a fixed period with each on a rotation basis.


What Are Their Beliefs?

The Bassari people adhere to the same traditional religion as their ancestors. They worship spirits they believe will provide for their needs without realizing these same spirits will do them eternal harm. There are some Christians among them, but we consider the Bassari an unreached people group.


What Are Their Needs?

Gospel recordings are available in the language of the Bassari people. There is a need for workers to use these to win people to Christ.


Prayer Points

There are a number of Christian believers among the Bassari living in Senegal and Guinea. Pray the Holy Spirit will thrust some of these out to take Christ to the Bassari of Guinea-Bissau and help disciple the few believers already there.
Pray for abundant crops for the Bassari, and for health care facilities.
Pray this will be the decade of spiritual harvest among the Bassari people, leading them to make disciples throughout West Africa.


Scripture Prayers for the Bassari in Senegal.


Profile Source:   Joshua Project  

People Name General Bassari
People Name in Country Bassari
Population this Country 21,000
Population all Countries 43,000
Total Countries 3
Indigenous Yes
Progress Scale 2
Unreached No
Frontier People Group No
GSEC 2  (per PeopleGroups.org)
Pioneer Workers Needed
Alternate Names Basari; Boin; Ncham; Tenda Basari; Tenda Boeni; Tobota
People ID 10711
ROP3 Code 101114
Country Senegal
Region Africa, West and Central
Continent Africa
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Upper Casamance, Edun area; border areas, Kedougou, Tambacounda.   Source:  Ethnologue 2016
Country Senegal
Region Africa, West and Central
Continent Africa
10/40 Window Yes
Persecution Rank Not ranked
Location in Country Upper Casamance, Edun area; border areas, Kedougou, Tambacounda..   Source:  Ethnologue 2016

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Primary Language Oniyan (21,000 speakers)
Language Code bsc   Ethnologue Listing
Primary Dialect Bassari
Dialect Code 1868   Global Recordings Listing
Language Written Yes   ScriptSource Listing
Total Languages 1
Primary Language Oniyan (21,000 speakers)
Language Code bsc   Ethnologue Listing
Primary Dialect Bassari
Dialect Code 1868   Global Recordings Listing
Total Languages 1
People Groups Speaking Oniyan

Primary Language:  Oniyan

Bible Translation Status  (Years)
Bible-Portions Yes
Bible-New Testament Yes  (2011-2016)
Bible-Complete No
Bible-NT Audio Online
Bible-NT Text Online
Possible Print Bibles
Amazon
World Bibles
Forum Bible Agencies
National Bible Societies
World Bible Finder
Virtual Storehouse
Resource Type Resource Name
Audio Recordings Audio Bible teaching
Audio Recordings Online New Testament
Film / Video Jesus Film: view in Oniyan
Film / Video LUMO film of Gospels
Film / Video My Last Day video, anime
General Gospel resources links
Text / Printed Matter Bible: Oniyan
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Major Religion Percent
Buddhism
0.00 %
Christianity  (Evangelical 0.25 %)
18.00 %
Ethnic Religions
74.00 %
Hinduism
0.00 %
Islam
8.00 %
Non-Religious
0.00 %
Other / Small
0.00 %
Unknown
0.00 %
Christian Segments Percent
Anglican
0.0 %
Independent
20.0 %
Orthodox
0.0 %
Other Christian
0.0 %
Protestant
10.0 %
Roman Catholic
70.0 %
Photo Source Darcy Dueck 
Profile Source Joshua Project  
Data Sources Data is compiled from various sources. Read more