Burkina Faso is among the poorest countries in the world. A shocking 45% of the country’s 18.1 million people live on less than $1.25 per day — that’s more than 8 million people living in severe poverty. More than 1 in 10 Burkinabe children suffer from acute malnutrition, and 3 in 10 suffer low height for their age as a result of insufficient food intake or poor diet.
The poverty of Burkina Faso makes progress difficult. The country is plagued by low access to basic infrastructure like electricity and sanitation, and the country’s food insecurity can cause health and developmental issues, which increase the already daunting obstacles Burkinabe children face in building a better future.
Those problems are also being exacerbated by rapid deforestation, which is worsening the floods and droughts that plague the country. To overcome the obstacles Burkinabes face requires a combination of strategies: from international disaster relief efforts, to healthcare, to water and sanitation infrastructure. Here’s how Humanity First USA is helping.
Clean Drinking Water for Burkina Faso
Humanity First USA has worked hand-in-hand with local residents and partners to dig wells and build water infrastructure in Africa. In 2017 alone, we refurbished 75 pumps across more than 70 villages throughout Burkina Faso and Mali, supplying more than 75,000 people with clean drinking water. In 2019, we launched a new project in collaboration with IAAAE to refurbish 100 hand pumps and serve tens of thousands of people with clean drinking water through out Burkina Faso.
Giving Burkinabe’s the Gift of Sight
The leading causes of vision problems are treatable. In a majority of cases, a simple cataract surgery or even a pair of glasses can return full vision to a vision-impaired person, however many in the developing world lack access to basic eye care.
Our Gift of Sight program operates a mobile eye clinic and works in collaboration with Ahmadiyya Mission hospital in Burkina Faso, providing life-changing eyecare services. In the last decade, we have provided more than 10,000 free eye surgeries to Burkinabes, restoring their vision.
Establishment of Schools
In 2018, Humanity First USA initiated a project to build schools in underserved communities in Burkina Faso. Our first high school project in Koubri near Ouagadougou, the capital, is expected to complete soon and open its doors for the new school year in Fall 2019. A second school primary project was initiated the city of Banfora in 2019. It is expected to complete in early 2020 and will provide much needed education to more than 400 students of the local community.
Providing Training for Women Entrepreneurs
Lack of education is lack of opportunity. Without training in new skills, it’s very hard for poor people to break the cycle of poverty. That’s why we run a sewing center in Burkina Faso, training women in basic and advanced textile work. These entrepreneurs can bring their skills back to their villages, improving life for their families and their communities.
From providing basics like water sanitation, to advanced training in lucrative skills, Humanity First is doing all we can to help Burkina Faso develop and prosper. Please join us to build a better future for all humanity.