Harvest of tomatoes at the LAP

My last blog was beginning of July, 3 months ago. Even so it is the rainy season in Burkina during those 3 months, projects are still moving on. Time to give an update.

Situation in Burkina Faso

First the positive side of the news. The rainy season is good this year. There has been some very heavy rains at time, making communication between villages and cities difficult, but overall quite a decent amount of rain. Harvests should be good which will be a relieve for many families.

Prices of good are still very high. For example price of gasoline has increased by more than 20% in a 3 months period, price of edible oil also increased by more than 30% in 2022. Since salaries are at the same level since over 3 years, purchasing power of families has decreased drastically.

On the political side, you have seen that a new military person has pushed the one who had made a coup in January. After some days of confusion which could have lead to 2 military groups fighting each other, the new putschist finally took over without any fighting.

The main reason of this new coup rebellion was the lack of results against the terrorists. Just before the coup d’état 25 militaries had lost their life in an ambush of the terrorists. Ibrahim Traoré, the new leader, is denouncing the gentrification of the top military people.

Let us see what he is capable of in a situation which mixed terrorists, jihadists, ethnical conflicts and especially greed.

So far there is no impact in Burkina of the political / security situation on our projects. It does however have impact on my trip schedule to Burkina. Hopefully our fundraising activities will not be impacted by the news in the media.

What’s new at the LAP?

In July the construction of the teachers refectory was completed as well as a new house for a teacher.

This refectory is equipped of a refrigerator and a television. It is managed by the teachers who are paying 23 euro per month to get a meal at lunch, pay for the cook and pay for a subscription for the TV programs.

This should improve the living condition of the permanent personnel at the LAP.

Outside and inside of the refectory. This has been funded by the van Kesteren Foundation.

On September 19th the new school year has started with 305 students, 147 girls and 158 boys. This is the first time since 2017 that we have more boys than girls. There are 55 new students, 27 boys and 28 girls. During the first 2 weeks their activities were split between refresher courses in French and Math, harvesting some of the crops and getting to know each other via games.

The first year students

Harvest of the beans

Harvest of lentils

During this period our first 2 calves were born. The 3rd cow is also expecting to deliver anytime.

What is new in the villages?

A majority of our economical projects are directed to women.

With the women of Sipigui and 2 men from Nefrelaye we have started a test project for ginger. We provide the participants with seeds and compost at credit. At the time of the harvest in January APPA will buy the ginger from the women at which time the credit will be paid back.

The ginger will then be processed by APPA and sold locally until the volume gets big enough to interest customers for export.

Picture taken of growing ginger last August

Another project with women of Sipigui, Fon and Sissa is about growing  peanuts. For this project, good peanuts seeds and compost are provided at credit. The women will then sell their peanuts to APPA and reimburse their credit. Most of the production will be sold by APPA to the LAP which needs it to feed its students.

Haoua proudly showing peanuts at the women association field.

This field has been fenced and will be used for a gardening project funded by “Electriciens sans Frontieres” later this year.

Women of Sipigui checking some of the equipment in Bobo

The churning machine will decrease the time by 4 and the churning will be done by the machine instead of by hand by the women.

For our 25th anniversary we made some videos so we can give some idea of what we have realized during those 25 years. Here is the link for the first one, giving general information

Saying of this blog

“The only thing wrong with trying to please everyone is that there is always at least one person who will remain unhappy, you.” ― Elizabeth Parker

Hope you are all well, until next time.

Hervé

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