Pastoralists in West Africa are not known to be particularly interested in education. For this reason, few Fulani in Burkina Faso enroll in schools or attend formal classroom instruction. So, it came as quite a surprise when a group of women, men, and tribal leaders from Signoghin (near Bittou) approached the Inspector of Primary Education to build a school for their young children. The Inspector was delighted to hear of their interest.
A returned Peace Corps volunteer (RPCV) and her counterpart, a former Burkinabe agricultural extension agent (who now is president of an NGO, called AIVPDL), maintained correspondence for more than 30 years.
The Community Building Group, a nongovernmental organization launched an initiative called Give Water Give Life to build and refurbish village Rainwater Catchment Basins (RWCB) in 2013. Properly designed and constructed in appropriate locations, RWCBs tap into the existing water aquifer and raise the groundwater table. Basins provide villagers water every day of the year, even in the dry torrid conditions of the Sahel.
Tigoung Nonma (TN) is a cooperative for persons suffering from physical disabilities in Ouagadougou. FBF and TN formed a partnership in 2014 in an effort to raise funds to build a workshop for TN members. The cooperative operates two primary income-generating activities: handicrafts and a catering service. Artisans with physical disabilities make and sell jewelry, baskets, textile products, ceramics and sculptures. Other members living with disabilities operate a catering service that prepares and delivers meals to clients living in or near Ouagadougou.
Ashoka is a non-profit organization that promotes social entrepreneurship throughout the world. FBF formed a partnership with an Ashoka fellow from Burkina Faso in 2012. This fellow launched a nursery/forestry project designed to train youth about methods to cultivate and develop plantations of eucalyptus, jatropha, acacia, and fruit trees within the Bendatoege zone near Ouagadougou.
Two Burkinabe NGOs--Association ASUDEC and Association NOWON--approached FBF about collaborating with them in efforts to promote shea-butter as a source of income for women’s cooperatives in the villages of Babora-Pegora and Tiogo. FBF provided funds to ASUDEC in 2003 and to NOWAN in 2010 to purchase a hydraulic oil press in Babora-Pegora and Tiogo, respectively. The mills, in combination with ASUDEC’s and NOWON’s educational programs, provided incentives for cooperative members to collect shea nuts, process them into shea butter, and sell the butter in the market.
FBF funds were used to purchase garden tools and irrigation equipment for women’s garden cooperatives in the villages of Loulouka and Koumbango in 2007, and Darigma in 2009. The irrigation equipment allows for increased food security and revenue for the members of the three cooperatives and their families.
Omigbéfitè, loosely translated as “help our brothers,” is an organization of 30 Burkinabé adults residing in the village of Loropeni in south central Burkina Faso. Each of its members grew up as an orphan or in a single parent household. The group welcomed the arrival of many young orphans into their community in 2006-07 due to the influx of people crossing the border from war-torn Ivory Coast in the mid-2000. Omigbéfitè provided these youth with food, housing, and apprenticeships educating them about farming grains, vegetables, and livestock.