Bobo Dioulasso; the second largest city in Burkina Faso
Bobo is located in the south-west region of Burkina Faso, a landlocked country in Western Africa. 10 years ago, Bobo had a population of 600,000, but due to rapid population growth and intense migration of people from rural areas to the city, its population now exceeds 1.5 million. When families reach the city, they find there is inadequate infrastructure to cope with the growing population. Schools are particularly affected. With so many children searching for places in schools, many are increasingly oversubscribed or have class sizes in excess of 100 pupils.
In 2005, International Needs opened La Bonne Nouvelle School in Colma, a northern district of Bobo. La Bonne Nouvelle is made up of both a primary and secondary school, which are currently attended by over 450 pupils. The school welcomes all children of all faiths but particularly focuses on encouraging Muslim girls to pursue education as they are often the most unlikely to get an opportunity to go to school due to economic and cultural reasons.
In 2017, the government shut down 71 unlicensed schools in Colma. These schools were taking advantage of poorer parents and children by taking money but having no interest in providing quality education; class sizes in these schools were up to 200 pupils. This has put pressure on the entire education system as thousands of children now need places in licensed schools. Due to the high demand for school places The Burkina Faso Ministry of Education has asked La Bonne Nouvelle School to create an additional 140 paid places and has committed to continue funding them for five years, starting in September 2018.
To do this, a new block of 4 classrooms were built on the La Bonne Nouvelle site. The building work began in March 2018 and was completed shortly before the start of the new school term in September 2018. To plan ahead for potential future expansion the foundations were built to allow for a second storey of classrooms to be added in the future.
With the incredible generosity of our supporters, we were able to raise the £70,000 needed to build and equip the classrooms ready for students. The high demand for school places meant that the additional places provided by these classrooms were quickly filled during the September intake.
How you can make a difference at La Bonne Nouvelle
One of the main barriers to education in Bobo Dioulasso is cost. By sponsoring a child living in Bobo Dioulasso, you can give the life-changing opportunity to go to school. Find out more about becoming a sponsor today here.
Alternatively, if you would like to find out more about this programme and other ways you can get involved, please get in touch with National Director Danny Morris at firstname.lastname@example.org