Revealing the project “Support to health and education of people with albinism in the Centre and Hauts-Bassins regions of Burkina Faso”

Achille Sawadogo with the board of ABIPA after the project planning meeting, September 2020
Meeting with the ABIPA section in Bobo Dioulasso, Hauts Bassins Region

As part of the management of the Ethereum Community Grant in Burkina Faso, Aid & Save in partnership with Colmena Labs, have authorized the funding of a social inclusion project targeting people with albinism.

Read the rationale:

Albinism is a rare genetic and inherited disease that is manifested through hypopigmentation of the skin, body hair and the pigmented structures of the eye. In variant forms, this disease often leads to low vision, distressing or even painful visual sensations, skin problems with a risk of skin cancer due to exposure to the sun, etc. This negatively affects not only the health and social integration but also the education of people with albinism especially when the educational tools and system are inadequate. One example of measure is increasing texts size in schools to remedy the visual problems.

Cases of skin problems due to sunburn

In Burkina Faso studies showed that the situation is marked by a lack of understanding of the disease and a lack of information exposing albinos to serious skin and eye health problems, sometimes even killings, attacks, bullying and dehumanizing stigma.

To overcome this issue, Aid & Save and Colmena Labs both partner organisations, have agreed to design and finance a project title: “Support to health and education of people with albinism in the Centre and Hauts-Bassins regions of Burkina Faso”.

Health is the primary sector in this project, then come education and social protection. So, it was important to involve at least a doctor with some experience on albinism projects ideally in the African context.

Dr. Chus Torres is a Spanish Dermatologist with long year’s experience of work and research on albinism including in Africa. She is also committed to defend the cause of albinos and to support them whenever this is possible.

Left: Dr. Chus (middle in blue coat) leading a sensitization session on sun protection

The Burkinabe Association for the Integration of Albino People (ABIPA) is the implementation partner for this project. With a global cost of 6,000 USD funded by Ethereum grants, it aims to reach 213 children and 103 adults directly and 1,200 people indirectly.

The first meetings to launch this project took place in September 2020 and the first activities started in October. This includes the planning of dermatological and ophthalmological consultations and the printing of school books with increased text size. In the coming months (until December 2020), the same activities will be extended to other cities of the Centre and Hauts Bassins regions (i.e Bobo Dioulasso, Banfora).

Printing of books with increased text size for pupils

We have noted a real commitment of the ABIPA members for the success of this project.

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Mandela Washington Fellow, for Young African Leaders — Civic engagement — Development Cooperation, Economist, Project Management skills, Free learner

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Achille Sawadogo

Achille Sawadogo

Mandela Washington Fellow, for Young African Leaders — Civic engagement — Development Cooperation, Economist, Project Management skills, Free learner

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