OIC, Burkina Faso team up to empower women, children in refugee camps


The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and the government of Burkina Faso have signed an agreement to implement a project aimed at empowering women and improving child care in refugee and displacement camps. The signing took place on 23/3/2023, following a field visit by a joint delegation from the OIC, the Islamic Solidarity Fund, and the OIC Mission in Niger to refugees and displaced persons in Burkina Faso from 19 to 24/3/2023. The project was approved at the 8th Ministerial Conference for Women in July 2021 in Cairo.

Dr. Amina Al-Hajri, Director General of Cultural, Social, and Family Affairs, signed the agreement on behalf of the OIC General Secretariat, while Mr. Karamoko Jean-Marie Traoré, Minister Delegate for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Regional Cooperation, and Burkinabe Abroad, signed on behalf of the government of Burkina Faso. During the visit, the joint delegation met with H.E. Mrs. Olivia Rumba, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Regional Cooperation, and Burkinabe Abroad, senior officials at the Ministry, and H.E. Mrs. Nandi Soumie Diallo, Minister of National Solidarity, Humanitarian Action, National Reconciliation, Women, and the Family, who welcomed the initiative of the General Secretariat and affirmed the readiness of their ministries and the competent authorities to cooperate with the OIC to ensure the success of the project.

Dr. Amina Al-Hajri expressed the OIC Secretary-General’s keen interest in implementing the project and reiterated the OIC’s commitment to providing all possible means of support to achieve security, stability, and development in Burkina Faso and the Sahel countries in general.

The project aims to empower women in refugee and displacement camps through skills training, income generation activities, and awareness-raising campaigns on gender-based violence, among other interventions. It also aims to improve the quality of child care services in these camps by providing training to caregivers and setting up safe and child-friendly spaces.

The project is of great significance, given the high numbers of refugees and displaced persons in Burkina Faso and the Sahel region, who are facing numerous challenges, including insecurity, limited access to basic services, and limited economic opportunities. Women and children are among the most vulnerable groups, and the project’s focus on their empowerment and well-being is therefore critical.

The signing of the agreement between the OIC and Burkina Faso is a testament to the strong partnership between the two entities and their shared commitment to promoting human development, peace, and security in the Sahel region. It is hoped that the project will have a positive impact on the lives of women and children in refugee and displacement camps and contribute to the broader efforts to address the humanitarian crisis in the region.

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