Community Leader in Burkina Faso Stresses the Importance of Self-reliant Development

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THP-Burkina interviewed Yabré Belemgnégré, a local leader in the community to learn more about her experiences in building local capacity, and her ambitions for the future.

THP-Burkina: Can you tell us your name, your age and where are you from?

Yabré Belemgnégré: My name is Yabré Belemgnégré and I am from Vowogdo. As far as my age is concerned, I don't know how old I am.

THP: You don't know how old you are or you don't want to tell?

YB: Let's talk about other things.

THP: O.K. How long have you been involved with THP-Burkina?

YB: I learned about THP-Burkina in 2003 when it started working in my area and they asked to meet leaders from 10 villages.

THP: You just said that you answered when leaders were invited to the first meeting THP-Burkina organized in Vowogdo area. How do you see yourself as a leader?

YB: I was then, and I am still, the leader of the woman grouping named Soogtaaba from the village of Vedgo-petit, one of the 10 partner villages of the epicenter of Vowogdo. I am also a member of the AWFFI Epicenter Committee.

THP: Indeed, a leader you are. Tell us now if your involvement in THP-Burkina work has had any impact on you and your family? If so, to what extent?

YB: Yes, it has a lot. I have learned in THP-Burkina workshops, of which I am now one of the animators, that development, more than anything else, requires preparedness including a vision, a commitment and due actions. I have also learned that if anything has to be done in our villages, it will have to be initiated and sustained by us, the local populations, first and above all.

THP: Can you name any other tangible impacts?

YB: Yes, there are. Just to mention a few, I would name the loan I acquired from AWFFI-Burkina which enabled me to carry out income-generating activities and now be able to send my kids to school and take better care of my family. I would also mention the literacy training I've received from THP-Burkina, which took me out of obscurity.

THP: Anything else you might what to add?

YB: Just to say a thousand of thanks to THP-Burkina and ask them to keep up the good work. The change in our communities may seem slow, but it's really happening.

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