After over 2 months in Europe, I am back in Burkina. Eugénie will join me beginning of October.
We are coming to the end of the rainy season and it is the beginning of the harvests.
Activities at the LAP
During the rainy season, 17 students did their internship at the LAP. Besides their training on cultures or animals, they helped cultivate 11 hectares.
For 3 classes the new school year started on September 15th and the other 3 classes will start on September 22nd. This coming year we will have a total of 278 students. The first week is an orientation week for the new students and also harvesting lentils, beans, eggplants…
Bread made with, in part, local cereals
We have built and started a bakery on the grounds of the LAP. The bread is made with wheat, but also millet or corn flour (about 25%). The startup was not easy. We had to find a good baker, start the promotion of our bread and get organized.
We are now baking 120 breads /day and we expect to increase this to 240 by next month. The customers are villagers but mainly all the civil servants from the villages nearby.
Some news about Burkina
The security situation in the border region is still not good. In our area however it is under control. The main target of the terrorists attacks are the army and/or the police. Due to corruption, the military are not very well equipped to attack the terrorists or to defend themselves.
Another aspect of the life in Burkina is strikes. It is mainly civil servants who go on strike. Right now there is a strike of the nurses and doctors. The only way to get treatment is to go to private clinics which are not easily accessible for villagers (price and distance). So, people are dying…
There is also a strike happening of the personnel who process official papers (company registration, certificate of nationality…). A lot of students have problems to apply to university because they miss documents.
Becoming a civil servants is still the job to have (whatever it is). This month 1.200.000 people will try to have one of the 6.000 opened jobs. This is where nepotism and corruption play a big role in the results.
This is a bleak picture of the country, but we are still optimistic that we are making a difference. Motivating and training young people to start their businesses and employ others is one of our goals.
Proverb of the week
Robert A. Heinlein: “Women and cats will do as they please, and men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.”
Albert Einstein: “Never memorize something that you can look up.”
More news about our activities next week.