Community Garden Well – Burkina Faso

Yorko, Burkina Faso

Community Description
The village of Yorko is located in the central east region of Burkina Faso, in the province of Boulgou, and 15 kilometers east of Zabre, its district capital. Yorko is part of the aire sanitaire of Beka (11,689 inhabitants). As a farming community with 4,675 inhabitants; the village is separated by six quartiers. The village lacks electricity, running water, and paved roads.

Yorko’s main crops are grains, vegetables, and peanuts. The principle ethnicity is Bissa with a small amount of Mossi as well. Christianity, Animism, and Islam are also practiced.

Yorko is found in the Sub-Saharan climate. In the past fifteen years, the average rainfall per year has been 927 mm, with about fifty days of rain.

The region is characterized by a dry season that extends from October to May and a more humid/rainy season from June to September. There is little vegetation in the region, and deforestation is a mounting problem with the overgrazing of animals and bush-fires.

Malnutrition is Burkina Faso’s most prevalent and pressing health concern. A child who is malnourished during pregnancy, or during his or her first two years of life, is irreversibly affected both mentally and physically

Programs designed to relocate mothers and infants to other areas for the treatment of malnutrition have proven to be ineffective because of their difficulty and the time and costs involved.

Project Description
This project is to build a well to support a community garden. The larger effort, the building and development of the garden, is being supported by a number of individuals and agencies.

The community garden will support the cultivation of a number of crops, including the Moringa tree. Moringa has high nutritional value, and can be a key and vital factor in alleviating some of the adverse effects of malnutrition.

This will permit the community to produce vegetables during the growing season of each crop, and Moringa during the rainy season when there is a scarcity of fruits and vegetables.

All of the parts of the Moringa tree can be put to beneficial use. The leaves can be eaten fresh, cooked, or stored as dried powder for many months without refrigeration, and without loss of nutritional value. Other parts can be used in the treatment of a variety of different ailments, including high blood pressure, inflammation, rheumatism, and indigestion.

In addition to providing a tremendous nutritional resource for the community, the garden will provide an income for the participants. They will be able to grow and use what is needed for their families, and sell the remainder to the other members of the community.

This project was originated by, and will be run under the auspices of, DAKOUPA, an agricultural-based women’s group of Yorko. Informally started in 2003, DAPOUKA is a group of 25 dedicated women who are committed to the continued development of Yorko.

Local participation will include land for the garden, and manual labor for construction, cultivation, and maintenance. The community will also contribute local materials, such as sand, gravel, rocks, and water. It will also transport all of the necessary materials.

Project Impact
The most immediate and direct beneficiaries will be the 25 women who participate, and their families and friends. However, the indirect benefit to the community at large will be widespread due to the availability of nutritional fruits and vegetables, and most importantly Moringa, in its various forms.

Peace Corps Volunteer Directing Project
Brittany Bermudez

This project demonstrates a number of principles espoused by Water Charity and Appropriate Projects. First, we are able to participate in a larger project, and complete a meaningful part, upon which the rest of the project may be based.

In this case, we are providing the funds for the first well, after which larger grants will follow to accomplish the remaining tasks to create a fully-functioning community garden. A major problem with traditional fundraising has been that most projects are unable to be started until all funds are raised. Our methodology of “doing projects now” allows us to get many projects off the ground at once.

Our main focus on water and sanitation cannot be disassociated from interrelated factors such as malnutrition and economic development. In this case, we are pleased to have these additional components incorporated in a single project. We are huge advocates of the Moringa tree, and are pleased to participate in the implementation of a nursery to cultivate same.

In addition, we recognize the economic benefits that will accrue to the participating population by starting a small business.

Dollar Amount of Project

Donations Collected to Date

Dollar Amount Needed
$0.00 – This project has been fully funded through the generosity of David Keyzer, of Lincoln, Nebraska, USA.

We encourage others to continue to donate using the Donate button below, and we will notify Peace Corps Volunteer Brittany Bermudez of your donation. Additional money received will be used to fund the next project by Brittany and/or those of her counterpart PCVs in Burkina Faso.

This project has been completed. To read about the conclusion of this project, CLICK HERE.