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He has attempted the journey to Europe three times, and refuses to give up

Mamadou Niang at his home in Gandiol, Senegal, on Oct. 6. Mamadou's father worked their family farmland until he died in 2006, and Mamadou would have liked to follow in his footsteps. But he can't, he says, because rising seas are pushing salt water into the fields.
Ricci Shryock for NPR
Mamadou Niang at his home in Gandiol, Senegal, on Oct. 6. Mamadou's father worked their family farmland until he died in 2006, and Mamadou would have liked to follow in his footsteps. But he can't, he says, because rising seas are pushing salt water into the fields.

Mamadou Niang has decided he has no choice but to leave his native Senegal. He is the son of a farmer, but salinization has made it impossible to farm his family's land in West Africa.

He has tried to leave his hometown of Gandiol three times for Europe.

The first two times, he was deported. The third time, in 2020, his boat was stopped. The Spanish government caught them hours after they left Dakar.

Previous failed attempts are not stopping his plans.

He tells NPR what he has to gain — and what he could lose — if he attempts the journey again.

Listen to our full report by clicking or tapping the play button above.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Ari Shapiro
Ari Shapiro has been one of the hosts of All Things Considered, NPR's award-winning afternoon newsmagazine, since 2015. During his first two years on the program, listenership to All Things Considered grew at an unprecedented rate, with more people tuning in during a typical quarter-hour than any other program on the radio.
Ayen Bior
Ayen Deng Bior is a producer at NPR's flagship evening news program, All Things Considered. She helps shape the sound of the daily shows by contributing story ideas, writing scripts and cutting tape. Her work at NPR has taken her to Warsaw, Poland, where she heard from refugees displaced by the war in Ukraine. She has spoken to people in Saint-Louis, Senegal, who are grappling with rising seas. Before NPR, Bior wore many hats at the Voice of America's English to Africa service where she worked in radio, television and digital. Bior began her career reporting on the revolution in Sudan, the developing state of affairs in South Sudan and the experiences of women behind the headlines in both countries. In her spare time, Bior loves to kayak, read and bird watch.
Sarah Handel