I have come to the end of this trip. Eugénie will stay an additional 2 weeks.
This last week was mostly spent in the office. We were working on the development of the social businesses and at the same time we were closing activities which were not sustainable for various reasons.
We are working on a development plan for the social business for the women Musso Ka Yiriwali So (MKYS). But we are closing Burkinakarité which was a union of 5 women associations. Burkinakarité was created to increase the revenue of the karité (shea) activity for the women. A lot of the work of this union was done by ASAP and it was not sustainable. The women are mainly interested in « money » and they did not understand that they had to hire and pay a manager to be able to go on. The volume of produced karité butter was also too variable to make it a sustainable activity. So Burkinakarité has been dissolved and the activity transferred to MKYS. MKYS is a business and works with more villages, transforms some of the karité butter into soap and cream. It can also create other opportunities for the women with other products collected by the women: neem, balanites…
We had also helped the start of a cereal cooperative with men, Opurkina. Opurkina is also going to be dissolved. Problems to understand the real concept of cooperative, the lack of unity between the members and the pressure of the surroundings are the main cause of this failure. Here also a social business has been started (Sene Yiriwali So or SYS). SYS works only with individual farmers not with groups of farmers.
|Some of the equipment of SYS|
With Burkinakarité, women have multiplied their revenue by 6 and MKYS is the only way to have continuity for this increase of revenue, so no sadness with its closing. All the efforts were worth it. Regarding Opurkina, I have mixed feelings. It could have worked with different people. But SYS will be able to give opportunity to more farmers to improve their income.
Alain (head of social business) et Désiré (MKYS) during the last meeting of Burkinakarité
Last meeting of the delegates of Burkinakarité
Another major event of the week was the visit of the Dutch Ambassador in Burkina Faso to the LAP our private agricultural school.
It was very nice of him to take time to visit this realization. We think he was also impressed by the fact we started such a project (unique in Burkina) and also of what he saw.
Son Excellence Ernst Norman and myself
The ambassador addressing the students.
News about LAP
Every month the LAP employees and students write a blog (bulletin) about their latest news and progress. If you want to receive a message each time we have some news, let us know! Below is the beginning of the latest bulletin..
STUDENTS COUNCIL 2013
The students council manages all the LAP activities :
Practical activities (garden, coop, piggery) as well as
social and cultural activities. It is composed of 10
students :3 from CAP1 and 7 from CAP2.