Due to the presence of Jihadists, the security situation in the north of Burkina Faso has forced many families into exile! There are several thousand women, men and children trying to find refuge in our diocese of Koudougou. It should be noted that the church has taken this worrying situation into its own hands. Thus, during her visit to Koudougou, our provincial, Sister Virginie, wanted to get in touch with this reality and she shares her experiences with us!
Madeleine RA- West Africa Province
Meeting our internally displaced brothers and sisters in Burkina Faso
During my stay in Koudougou, Sister Anne Marie Lucienne and I went to meet a group of displaced people in Ividie, in the commune of Zawara, Province of Sanguié. This locality is part of the diocese of Koudougou.
According to information received from Father Norbert ZONGO, in charge of migrants, there are more than 25 thousand displaced persons in the territory of the diocese. The group we met arrived from the vicinity of DJIBO, settling in makeshift houses made of plastic bags. They have come from northern Burkina to ask for hospitality in Ividié, central western Burkina. They are exclusively Muslims, farmers and breeders. It is thanks to the generosity of the head of IVIDIE who gave up his field that these displaced people have been able, thanks to the awareness of the parish priest of this locality, to share a few mud houses which have been built. In this rainy season, the inside of these makeshift dwellings is literally mud!! This group of displaced people is mostly women and children.
This visit is a concretization of the desire to live from my current mission the going out to the peripheries of our people. For me it is a question of letting myself be touched by this reality through seeing, hearing and touching it. In fact, my eyes have seen, my ears have heard and I have touched. Yes, our presence was a comfort, a listening to the distress of people who have lost everything, livestock, crops; all that is left are their children and wives. Yes, I have seen and met worthy people in distress and living, in their own way, hospitality. Thanks to "Construyendo Futuro" and friends of Sister Magdalena Castro, we were able to share something in food, clothing, cleaning products and school supplies.
My heart is in thanksgiving for this experience made possible through collaboration and solidarity.
Sister Virginie Kanyala, Provincial AO