Population: 17.4 million (2012)
Official language: French
Major religion: Secular state
IFES movement: Union des Groupes Bibliques du Burkina Faso (UGBB)
Burkina Faso is a country in a challenging geographical location, with a tropical climate and an irregular rainy season that generally last 3 to 4 months. The country has seen a boom in its mining sector with several discoveries of gold, which is becoming the main export.
Freedom of religion is in the national constitution and the church has a big influence on politics.
- 4 universities, approximately 30 UGBB groups
- 2 full time staff, 16 volunteers
- small graduate ministry (30 groups)
- 350 rapidly growing high school groups
- largest groups in the University of Ouagadougou (over 200 students)
One of the strengths of UGBB is the commitment of students and their passion for evangelism. For example, after a recent national conference, several students committed to become missionaries and eight others went to support long-term missionaries in isolated rural areas for a month, in fairly harsh conditions.
UGBB also takes an active part in the organisation of conferences, such as the Missionary Convention of West Africa.
The greatest challenges facing movement have to do with organisation and mobilisation of lasting support, training of student leaders, and the lack of staff for groups, especially in secondary schools.
View from the inside
Dieudonné Tindano is the General Secretary for UGBB. He is encouraged to see the creative commitment of students regarding Scripture engagement and evangelism: ‘One of our student’s group received support as part of IFES’ innovation project; they used it to join a theatre contest, where the GBU’s theatre troupe and four other students’ theatre troupes participated. The main theme was “peace", which the various troupes chose to address through the following issues: marital conflict, post-election violence, interreligious conflicts, conflicts between herders and farmers.
‘Several groups have also innovated in the area of Scripture engagement, organising Bible study nights. I thank God for the continued interest in the creative study and communication of God’s Word.’
- for a better implementation of the Living Stones vision;
- for an improved organisation of activities;
- for success in post-graduate life: employment, marriage, family, graduates’ commitment with UGBB;
- for success in facing various challenges.