World Vision Supports 400 Women In Shea Butter Processing

World Vision Ghana (WVG) has supported 400 women at Bongo-Soe in the Bongo District of the Upper East Region to go into shea butter processing for export.

The women’s group called the Bongo-Soe Shea Pickers and Processors Association (BOPPA) began with a population of 50 in 1998 and has over the years expanded its membership to 400 women.

Apart from capacity building in the area of record keeping and sheanut processing, WVG gave the group a crasher and mill, borehole and a building facility.

Hitherto, majority of women in the area often migrated to the southern sector to do menial jobs to be able to fend for themselves and their children‘s education.

Others who could not travel found it difficult catering for their children but with the intervention of WVG, most of the women now contribute about 70 per cent to the household income level.

These came to light when the global and West African partners of WVG visited the area to see how the women were faring with their business.

Highlighting the overview of activities of the group the Ghana News Agency, the leader, Madam Susana Akurugu, indicated that, before the intervention of WVG, life was very difficult for them, since they could not fend for themselves and their children.

She said they could now supplement their household income and also pay their children’s school fees, as well as pay for their National Health Insurance Scheme, including their extended family members.

Madam Akurugu indicated that apart from being relieved of the laborious manual labour to process the shea butter, marketing had been made easy by a company that purchased the finished product for export, about three to four times a year.

She said apart from processing the nuts into shea butter for export, they were able to make soap and other products and also use the leftover products as manure on their farms.

Madam Amina Mohamadu, one of the beneficiaries, said she bought a donkey and cart from the shea butter proceeds which is used on the farm and also to cart her products to the market.

Mr Dirk Booy, World Vision International Partnership leader, in charge of Operations, lauded the women for taking the opportunity provided to help improve upon their living standard.

The National Director of WVG, Mr Hubert Charles told the group that one of the cardinal aims of World Vision was to ensure the promotion and protection of the well- being of children and urged the women to make it their topmost priorities.

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