In Reggio Emilia, the migrant inclusion is enhanced through projects for development cooperation with countries of origin. Creating thousands of workplace for the agricultural development and the fight against the food insecurity in Burkina Faso is not just a dream anymore thanks to the engagement of Reggio residents from this country and their capacities to do networking.
The association of people from Burkina Faso of Reggio Emilia and Emilia-Romagna (Abreer) signed an agreement with the Government of Burkina Faso, represented by Raymond Balima, Ambassador of Burkina Faso in Italy, and Emilian companies.
The project goal is to transfer technologies and competence to the African country in order to install production plants to assemble machines, as well as structures and services to sell the goods.
The idea was born within the association of people from Burkina Faso living in Reggio. “Some of us lost our jobs because of the crisis, so we decided to invest our time to learn something for the future – says the president of the association, Seni Bandaogo. “We collected some money among ourselves to organise training in organic agriculture for burkinabé living in Reggio, to see if it was possible to take advantage of these skills here in Italy and in Burkina Faso”.
The course on agricultural techiniques, AgrAfrica, gathered other local organisations, like Cooperativa La Collina, associazione Il Gabbiano, Crpa, and Dinamica, who helped for the training programme. Now, little by little, it is becoming a project of development cooperation, aiming to create autonomous small companies in the villages of Burkina Faso, active in agriculture, livestock farming, and energy production, in order to assure food and energy security, better conditions in health and education.
The Government of Burkina Faso will communicate the first areas and actions to start the implementation of the project in September. Meanwhile, a group of six companies from Reggio Emilia, active in the production of tractors and agricultural machines, machineries to process and preserve agricultural produces and food, and renewable energy, has already signed the agreement, ready to export components of machines and equipment to be assembled in Burkina Faso: Goldoni spa, Ceti Group, Parma Tech-Magreb, Boorea, Sei elettrotecnica, Amp.
“Migration has a positive impact on culture and society, as this project well explains – says Raymond Balima, ambassador of Burkina Faso in Italy – People with burkinabé origins are thankful to live in a city where they can find attention and willingness, starting from the institution: they are caring both of the future of their city and their native country”.