Poverty rate*44% of the population live under the poverty line of $1.90 per day
UN DEVELOPMENT INDEX*Rank: 185 out of 188
People supported per year137,549
Thematic focusWASH & Water Governance
Private Sector Development
Education and Vocational Skills
Gender & Social Equity
Burkina Faso has one of the highest poverty rates in the world. Nearly half the population lives below the poverty line. Most are subsistence farmers, who have been hit hard by climate change; regularly recurring droughts have left many families in great distress. Helvetas has been active in Burkina Faso since 2004, promoting sustainable agriculture that can yield a sufficient harvest even under adverse climatic conditions.
A better livelihood for young people
Youth employment is one of our priorities, and agricultural knowledge can help young people gain a stronger foothold in farming. With Helvetas' support, vocational trainings introduce more efficient and ecologically sustainable farming methods for farmers to feed themselves and their families. Farmers also learn to generate income by marketing some of their produce such as onions, horseradish, honey and gum arabic.
Access to remote regions
The poor state of the roads poses an obstacle to selling farmers' produce at the market. Helvetas is working with local partners to plan and build simple roads that give remote villages and regions better access not only to markets, but also to schools and medical facilities. We train workers and support the municipalities in infrastructure maintenance to ensure that the roads are properly maintained.
More educational opportunities
Nearly half the population of Burkina Faso is under 15 years of age. Without training, it is not easy for youth to make a living. Helvetas supports local authorities in implementping educational and training programs. The courses are tailored for the local employment market so that young people can find steady work as beekeepers or chicken farmers, motorcycle mechanics or welders.
Hygiene habits for schoolchildren
Helvetas is committed to improving sanitation in Burkina Faso. The water supply is limited in many parts of the country. Together with Helvetas, communities build latrines and drinking water systems, especially in schools and hospitals. To promote public health, we also help schools integrate the teaching of good hygiene habits ksuch as hand-washing into their curriculum.
Visit the website of Helvetas Burkina Faso.
Our Projects in Burkina Faso
If you would like to know more about our work in Burkina Faso, click on each project for details.