COVID-19 and Compassion’s Work in Burkina Faso

An in-depth look at the coronavirus pandemic in Burkina Faso

Last Updated: 10/19/2020

Burkina Faso is facing what relief organizations call a triple crisis – COVID-19, widespread flooding and armed violence. Attacks have forced more than 1 million people from their homes, and 12% of the country’s health facilities have closed. This has left pregnant women especially at risk, as it has become impossible for many to receive prenatal care.

All Compassion partner churches still have child development center group activities on hold, and they have readjusted their budgets to make sure children and families have food and hygiene items. The churches have distributed 436,926 food packs and 255,575 hygiene kits to families and continue to work to raise awareness of COVID-19 prevention. They also have helped 17,227 individuals access medical care. At some churches, staff are conducting small education classes on COVID-19 prevention measures.

COVID response in Burkina Faso

How is Compassion Currently Operating in Burkina Faso?

Below, you will find the latest information on how Compassion is currently operating in Burkina Faso, including status updates on center openings, letter delivery and gift delivery. This is the most current information we have, though it can change quickly. Please know that all children and their families are being checked in on regularly by staff, either in person or by phone, even if the Compassion center is not open for programming. Watch this video for a detailed explanation of how COVID-19 is affecting Compassion centers and how local partners are caring for each registered child during this season.

Are Compassion Centers Open?

At this point, all centers in Burkina Faso are closed in order to abide by local guidelines. Staff members are still calling and checking in on families, and in some communities they are able to visit children while obeying social distancing guidelines. Because of the generous support of sponsors and donors, they have been able to distribute 436,926 food packs and 255,575 hygiene kits to children and their families!

COVID response in Burkina Faso

child reading IconStory From the Field

Food scarcity has never been more worrying for single mother Zonabo and her two children. When the pandemic hit Burkina Faso, she lost her job as a housekeeper. Affording a daily meal for her family is now a luxury, not a guarantee.

“Life didn’t treat me well recently because the pandemic is deteriorating all my efforts to care for my children, Issouf and Rainatou," she says. "I rely on God for our daily bread because I very often skip lunch so we can have dinner. It is hard for a mom to see her children missing both breakfast and lunch.”

To help families living in extreme poverty to mitigate the effects of the pandemic, Compassion's local partners in Burkina Faso work tirelessly to distribute food packs to meet the greatest needs for vulnerable children in the country. The food parcels have come at the right time, rescuing thousands of families like Zonabo's from severe malnutrition.

“I am happy and thankful that the church and Compassion provided a bag of 25 kilograms [55 pounds] of rice, corn flour, and oil that equals my monthly salary. This food pack is good for our daily meals and will last for the next two months," she says. "I no longer need to skip meals and worry about what I will eat the next day, for God has provided, and I am thankful. Thanks to the food support, I can now look for small jobs and care for the other basic family expenses."

As her 19-year-old son, Issouf, returns to school in October, his Compassion center is committed to paying for his school fees, books and materials to make sure he can complete his education and fulfill his dreams.

“I pray to succeed in my high school exams and compete for the national recruitment of teachers that will allow me to provide for the needs of my family so that my mom and my sister have sufficient and quality meals every day," he says. "I believe that the best is yet to come if the center is by my side. May God bless all the generous sponsors who give their best to release children like me from poverty.”

How can I pray for Burkina Faso?

Pray for the health and safety of students, who returned to school on Oct. 1. Pray that the education they receive will greatly impact their lives and the lives of their families. For more prayer resources, visit Compassion’s COVID-19 prayer page for prayer guides and a virtual prayer wall.

How Can I Help?

Sponsor a Child in Burkina Faso
Give to Compassion’s COVID-19 Relief Fund
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