In Burkina Faso, the cyclical variation in the levels of food production, poor access to basic services, the volatility of agricultural product prices and environmental degradation are the elements of structural fragility of families living in rural areas. Looking ahead, these elements are bound to get worse. In the state of food insecurity, rural families implement “negative adaptation” strategies, selling grain stocks and seed stocks, resorting to migration, reducing the quantity and quality of food, or selling family assets.
Provincia di Oubritenga, Regione dell'Altopiano Centrale, Burkina Faso
The program intended to contribute to the full realization of the right to food, improving the living conditions of rural populations and supporting the national strategy to fight poverty in Burkina Faso.
The specific objective of this 4th year of the project was twofold:
in the first place, to further incentivize production through agroecological techniques to the full advantage of the conservation of soils and the environment, as well as the economic convenience that a quality product can give;
secondly, to strengthen and stabilize local agricultural producer organizations, favoring the purchase of production factors and the sale of agricultural products both at the community level, and therefore in a more efficient and economically profitable way.
Municipality of Loumbila, provinces of Oubritenga and of Boulkiemdé,
1720 people and their families
Awareness raising and training, as always, had a determining and preparatory weight. The realized initiatives were as follows:
- Awareness of the importance of community purchase of production factors.
- Awareness raising on the use of organic production factors.
- Training on the production of organic onions.
- Compost production training.
- Training in financial aspects, warehouse management, storage techniques, credit negotiation.
- Training on income-generating activities that can be achieved thanks to the warrantage credit (the warrantage is that extraordinary development mechanism that provides for the deposit in a warehouse of one’s harvest as a guarantee for a loan, which allows the producer to meet the expenses related to the generating activities of counter-season income without having to sell your produce immediately after harvest, when prices are significantly lower).
- Laboratory on the marketing of organic products, including the respective administrative aspects.
- Workshop on the community marketing of agricultural products, including the respective administrative aspects.
And then the field work, to complete what (a lot) already done in the previous three years:
- 14 people were assisted with advice, agricultural materials, production factors, fences, cuttings, etc., for the cultivation of as many agroecological experimental farms.
- Land previously purchased by the Loumbila Peasant Union was cultivated. It was equipped with a solar-powered well and with a tank for irrigation. Divided into plots, managed by the members of the union, it was used to experiment and disseminate the various agroecological practices.
Finally, the activities aimed at strengthening community cohesion:
- Construction of a warehouse for the storage of onions (in addition to the 3 already built previously), which is absolutely not trivial to ensure minimum product losses despite the local climate.
- Training of a technical assistant for the Union of Loumbila and integration of the same union into the national union of onion producers.
- Market study on organic legumes.
- Creation and equipment (with the purchase of a pickup truck) of a community sales channel for organic products.
I am Giulia Polato, born in 1989, scout and aid worker. Since I was a child, my family taught me a certain attention to social issues. The environment in which I grew up helped me to develop a certain pattern of thought and action. I remember my mother saying to me with her index finger menacingly relieved not to waste food “because African children die […]