I am back in Burkina since about 10 days for about 9 weeks.

The dry season has started since November last year and will be going on until may this year. It is a period when herds are moving from north west part of Burkina towards the south east part. Those herds can travel up to 500km in order to find grass.

Security situation in Burkina

I am sure that you have heard or read about terrorist attacks against military but also to civil people.

This is a real problem and there is no obvious solution. I already wrote last year that there are many stakeholders who want instability: the previous president Compaoré who was thrown out 5 years ago and wants to come back, traffickers who can take advantage of zones where there is no control, some local population who want to have control of their territory believing that there are mineral resources in it and jihadists who are probably not the main problem in Burkina.

Some of the difficulty to find a solution is a. the corruption of many people (military, officials), b.it is impossible for somebody to denounce a family member and c. the fear of retaliation if you denounce somebody. Burkinabe are peaceful people and it is not easy for them to confront brutal people. Finally d. there is not a political unity between the different leaders.

The zone where ASAP is active is still quiet. We are still realizing projects and we sincerely hope that you will keep supporting the development of the villagers.

Refugees and displaced population

Since 4 years Burkina has been receiving refugees from neighboring Mali. There are a few camps for those refugees. One of those camp will have to be closed since none of the charity organizations can enter the camp to control what is happening.

The number of displaced people is impossible to know. They are going to a town and might register their whole family when in fact they are alone. They can also move to another location and register there again. This is also helped by newly arrived charity organizations which are looking at getting funds on the back of the displaced people. It is very sad that some organizations take advantage of poor people just to fund themselves. I was told that in some areas, those non scrupulous organizations are fighting to be able to put “their flag” in first.

The secondary agricultural school (LAP)

Some more positive news. The LAP is developing nicely. We have been able to add a second water castle to increase the water availability. We will be starting the construction of 2 new houses for teachers.

Total of 32m3 water available

LAP-students

The drop irrigation system for fruit trees. We just harvest 500kg of water melons in this area. They where eaten by the students and probably the teachers.

Onions in one of the gardens

The LAP

Washable protection for menstruation

A positive development of the refugees / displaced people crisis is the orders we have received from organizations which are looking after those people.

We had to recruit 2 additional persons in order to satisfy the volume of the orders. This interest for our kits started when Odile managed to present the kits on national television.

Not easy to work with 7 people in a small space

Citations of the week

“When the power of love overcomes the love of power the world will know peace.” —Jimi Hendrix

“Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say that I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us and the world will be as one.” —John Lennon

Hope that you are all well.

Hervé

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