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Third only to Nouakchott and Nouadhibou, Matamoulana is the place, in Mauritania, that hosts the greatest number of Spanish and other nationals. It is known, hitherto, as a high place of Qur’anic studies and of the Tariqa Tijaniyya, spearheaded by the Sheikh El Haj Mishry, a prominent Muqaddim of the late Sheikh Ibrahima Niass of kaolak, Senegal.  


People from all parts of Africa, including Senegal, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, and the Central African Republic stay in the village to experience a pristine Islam and engage in an in-depth study of Islamic Sciences along with Sufism, the Islamic mysticism, if they so wish. They are all equally partaking in the village life as full members of the community, on an equal footing.  

There are already a dozen or so Spanish students from Andalusia, who are studying the Qur’an in the village and others are preparing to join them. Consequently, given the current growth in the global number of students from Europe, South America and elsewhere, there has gradually developed a problem of housing. However, the importance of the Spanish community in Matamoulana, has given rise to the concept of a “Guest house”. A big lot has already been placed at the disposal of the project by the Sheikh El Haj Mishry. A committee has also been set up, with intent to reflecting on a suitable housing project that would be able to enhance the comfort of the children and cater to their specific needs, given the prevailing harsh desert conditions they have to endure. 


The climate of Matamoulana is hot and dry. During the hot season, the temperature can rise up to 45 degrees in the shadow, and the traditional tin roofs can quickly act as heat conductors, in most houses. 


This guesthouse, acting as a platform of exchange will be a dynamic, collective space that will allow students from various origins to share a common setting for their accommodation, education, cultural exchange and catering, all with common classrooms, a library, a Creative and a Multimedia Centre. In addition, there will be sufficiently ventilated rooms, well-equipped kitchens and suitable shower rooms. The house will be built with a concrete roof and tiles in anticipation of the hot season. While protecting the students from unnecessary roaming, this type of set up will certainly maximise the time devoted to common activities and go a long way towards catering for the well-being of the students.                        

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