We are back in Burkina Faso after 6 weeks in The Netherlands. I will be staying here until the beginning of December and Eugénie until middle of November.

In this trip we have with us Louis (Eugénie’s brother) and Anne (daughter of friends in NL).

First some news about Burkina Faso.

You may know that in the neighboring country Mali, things are not the best. The North of the country is under the control of so called  Islamist militants. In reality they are mainly traffickers of all kinds: drugs, arms… People there are suffering a lot and it is really sad to see how the passivity of the country itself and of the international community.

Since the population of the North consists mainly of Tuaoregs, the ones living in the South of the country have been persecuted and a lot of them have left Mali for neighboring countries: Senegal, Burkina, Niger.

Among those refugees it is difficult to sort the good ones and the bad ones. People here are afraid that among the refugees there are people who come to create trouble.

Beside this situation, Burkina is preparing for a parliamentary and municipal election on December 2nd. The main difficulties are in the choice of the various candidates, especially in the CDP party (party of the president). Since election is mainly won thanks to bribes and through favors, nobody expects much of it. Let’s hope that the situation remains calm.

On the positive side, the rainy season has been rather good, even too much water in some areas. People expect to have a good harvest in our area. Coming week we have meetings with delegates from all the villages and we should be able to confirm this.

Activities this first week.

This first week has mainly been about our organization and planning of the visit.  Some changes have taken place with Désiré (an old timer of ASAP) becoming the boss of the karité project. We are actively looking for a replacement in ASAP.

With Elza, our secretary, on maternity leave, Emmanuel (ASAP director) has been very busy with the startup of the school year:

  • 17 scholarships for vocational training
  • 53 for secondary school in a boarding school
  • 130 at the LAP (our own Agricultural Secondary School)
  • Start of the year for 5 nursery schools which we administrate

Yesterday we went to the LAP. The rains have been very heavy and they have completely deteriorated the roads. It takes now almost one hour to travel 15 km between the main road and the LAP.

This is the beginning of the second year for our Agricultural school. 70 new kids (between 12 and 14 years old) in first year and 60 who have passed to the second year.

Very shy first year students

Very shy first year students

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We were not ready with everything for the start of this new year. Only yesterday did the second year students had a proper sitting and table. For the first week of class, some had to use chairs as table (left picture)

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Students have now 3 meals per day at the school. This avoid the problem of cooking by children after the classes or the problem of not having anything to eat. Left, the bread with blue band at 10 AM and right the lunch.

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Girls from the second year

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Building is going on at the LAP. Left the construction of the amphitheater and right the beginning of the dormitories for the girls “foyer”.

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The vegetable garden keeps producing. The vegetables are used in the lunch of the children.

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Beginning of August we had seeded some beans at our house. This is the results today.

The strength of the baobab is in its roots.
La force du baobab est dans ses racines.

Do not tire shouting your joy to be alive and you will not hear other cries.
Ne te lasse pas de crier ta joie d’être en vie et tu n’entendras plus d’autres cris.

This is a rather short message, I am just getting warmed up.

Have a safe and happy week.


Blijf op de hoogte van onze ontwikkelingen!