Burkina Faso

Number of children enrolled in the 2021 - 2022 programme: 33

Bobo-Dioulasso is the second largest city in the country, located west of the capital Ouagadougou. It has more than half a million inhabitants. The name of the city means “home of Bobo-Dioula,” which encompasses the two major ethnic groups in the city, although its ethnic composition is much more diverse. The city with a rich history is a popular tourist centre, with many museums and a large, dynamic market.

We are also cooperating with local partners in the implementation of the programme in Bobo-Dioulasso. We have been working with the NGO Kafuli for almost 20 years. Although Kafuli was officially founded in 2004, the beginnings of the collaboration date back to 2001, when the founder of Humanitas, Eva Marn, met teacher Seydou Ganou in Bobo-Dioulasso, who later became the president of Kafuli. Together with the help of Slovenian supporters, we built a library between 2004 and 2005, which remains one of the few community libraries in the city.

Over the years, we have equipped it quite well with books and numerous activities such as computer courses, English language courses, film screenings, reading lessons, music workshops and colouring workshops. We also organized trainings for mothers of children included in the support programme with the project support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia and in cooperation with Umanotera, the Slovenian Foundation for Sustainable Development, especially in weaving and dyeing with natural dyes. In 2008, more than 10 women learned weaving as part of such a project, and between 2010 and 2011 another 10, who are now educating other women.

In 2019, due to President Kafuli’s health problems, Seydou Ganou, who was also the engine of the organisation, stopped working with Kafuli and started working with new local partners. Ms. Inna Marietou Baye, a native of Bobo-Dioulasso, pays for the tuition and school supplies of the children included in our support programme. Inna has been running a support program for other related organizations for the past 19 years already. The management of the library was taken over by the organization Friends of African Village Libraries, or FAVL (Amis des bibliothèques de village africain), based in Ouagadougou. Founded in 2001 in the United States and in 2007 in Burkina Faso, FAVL aims to support local libraries in smaller towns and villages. There are few libraries in Burkina Faso, and access to books is extremely difficult for both children and adults. Today, they run 34 libraries across the country. These libraries are trying to renew their supply of books on a regular basis, while striving to increase the supply of African literature. The latter is expensive and even more difficult to access in Burkina Faso than, for example, books by French or European authors. Dounko Sanou, the National Coordinator of FAVL, is responsible for the operation of the library and our cooperation, and Ms. Ganamé Barakissa, a native of Bobo-Dioulasso, has taken over the role of librarian.

   
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