Search Breaking Ground

Breaking Ground Photo Gallery

 

Recent News and Events

 

Breaking Ground on Facebook Breaking Ground on Twitter Breaking Ground on Vimeo Breaking Ground on Youtube Breaking Ground on Flickr

Monday
Oct092017

Breaking Ground Soccer Team educates others on International Day of Peace

BG soccer teamIt is common to find young girls from the age of 7-22 hawking (selling goods) on the streets in the North of Cameroon during a school day.  This part of the country has many local cultural values that do not actively encourage the education of young women.  Due to the continued prevelance of many patriarchial structures, the place of a woman is often thought to be in more domestic roles, such as in the kitchen.  Some of these women have frusturations with their roles within society, often having limited opportunites.

Our female soccer team in Djohong has been doing a great job in promoting new opportunities and ideas for local girls. This year on the international day of peace, they decided to use this opportunity to educate other girls in their community on the importance of educating a girl child. Recently, on the UN's International Day of Peace, the young women held a soccer game open to other local girls in the community.  In addition to providing the young women with an opportunity to play, the game gave local spectators a chance to see the girls working together and competing.  Following the game, the team gathered with local spectators and educated them on the International Day of Peace.Girls educate their friends after the soccer match

Back in Dschang, our executive director, Paul, had a radio talk in which he educated others on this year's theme, "Together for Peace: Respect, Safety, and Dignity for All."  This year's campaign specifically promotes respect, safety, and dignity for refugees and migrants.  Its aim is to change the negative narratives on immigration and to strengthen the social cohesion between host communities, refugees, and migrants.  It is our goal to use this program to strengthen the socio-economic security of these women and allow them to continue to reside in their communities.

Friday
Jul072017

MEET OUR NEW BOARD CHAIR

Breaking Ground is thrilled to welcome the new board chair, Jeff Walton. After serving as a Board Chair for a decade, Lindsay Clarke is happy to handover to Jeff, Breaking Groud's new, proficient Board Chair.Meet Jeff Walton, Board Chair, Breaking Ground

Jeff holds a doctorate degree in Sustainability Education, from Prescott College, Prescott, Arizonia. He works as Executive Director in the House of Blue Hope, Dar es Salam, Tanzania/ Bayonne, New Jersey, where he led operations committee to develop, implements and evaluates new and existing programs, Promoted and coordinated annual board and donor trips to Tanzania. He also served as Development Consultant in TATU project, Tanzania, where he designed, monitored, and evaluated new entrepreneurial, agricultural and women's economic empowerment programs.

Aside his professional expertise, he is presently a lecturer at Champlain College, Burlington, Vermont where he teaches graduate courses in the Master of Science in Executive Leadership and Master of Business Administration programs. He has done a lot of research which is relevant in meeting Breaking Ground's objectives of sustainable development.

 

BREAKING GROUND SAYS WELCOME

Tuesday
Nov222016

MEET OUR FEMALE ENTREPRENEURS

The Cameroonian woman has for long been the economic backbone of the nation, yet she is largely marginalized in society generally, and in the economic sector in particular. She has skills and talents which can enable her make the economy better, but due to political, social and economic barriers, she fails to use them to the fullest.

There are only few successful female entrepreneurs in Cameroon. This is because they face certain challenges like, accesss to finance, lack business training, reconciling business and family concerns and so on. Breaking Ground trained female entrepreneurs this year which helped them develop skills they need to run thriving businesses. Participants attended classroom training sessions such as, financial management, sales/marketing, customer relations and human resource management, after which they each received individual visits from their mentor, to discuss any business specific challenges they face. Some of them were selected to be given loans, to either start or expand their businesses.

Meet Helen. She owns a bar/restaurant, and even though handicap, she manages to satisfy her clients at the end of the day. She has one child and not married. She said the entrepreuneurial class has helped her learn business strategies. The loan is going to help expand her business, and she will be able to employ someone to help serve the customers.Helen's bar/restaurant

This is Eva, a single parent and a mother of four children. Before, she had about 150 fowls in her poultry, but due to financial problems and lack of business strategies, she could not continue the farm. From the lessons learned in the entrepreneurial class, and the loan which will be given to her, she will succeed this time and expand her farm, she said. This will help her grow, be independent and provide quality education for her childrenEva's poultry

Breaking Ground will continue to follow up that these women to ensure that their businesses grow and that, they pay their loans in due time. This will also help in poverty alleviation in Africa and reduce the rate of marginalization of women in the political, social, cultural and most of all economic society.

 

Thursday
Sep292016

ONE WATER PUMP AT A TIME

Water is essential to life, not only to the human race, but also to plants, animals, and other creatures. We use it  for different purposes, to clean, cook, bathe, etc. It is essential to the full enjoyment of the right to life, and other Human Rights. In 2010, the Human Rights Council adopted a resolution, recognizing water as a basic human right under Aticles 11 and 12 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.Building a solar panel to get more energy supply for the pump

In Cameroon, precisely the Adamawa Region, a majority of the inhabitants lack access to potable water. They mostly drink water from streams and springs, which is not clean and safe, and during the dry season, most of the streams dry up. Very few people can afford sufficient potable water. This has a devastating effect on the health and prosperity of these people.Final Product of the water pump in Beka Hossere

 Apart from what the government has provided as safe water, NGO's have contributed alot to make the people of this part of Cameroon enjoy their right to clean and affordable water. Breaking Ground partnered with Memorial Flavia to provide a water pump in Beka Hossere, our partner community, in the Adamawa Region, which will enable the inhabitants to have access to potable water. We are almost done with this  pump, that will supply potable water to about 3500 inhabitants, thereby, reducing the spread of water borne diseases in the area, and helping to achieve sustainable development.

Tuesday
Aug232016

CHALLENGES FACED BY COCOA PRODUCERS IN WABANE VALLEY

The International Festival of Cameroonian Cocoa took place in Yaounde, from 11 to 15th of August, this year. The purpose for the festival, was to rejuvenate farms and farmers in cocoa and coffee sectors, in the country. Cameroon, which is the world 5th largest cocoa producer, produced 225000 tons of cocoa in the year 2013/2014, and is expected to produce 230000 tons by the end of 2016. Cocoa is one of the main cash crops in Cameroon, and the South West Region accounts for up to 70% of the nation's cocoa.

In 2011, Breaking Ground started a project in Wabane, one of our partner villages in the South West Region, to educate them on how to improve on the quantity and quality of cocoa in their community. We distributed cocoa plants to the farmers, and this year, they have harvested more cocoa than ever. Despite all these, the farmers complain that, they face a lot of challenges during cocoa production.

Planted in 2011

To begin with, most of the farmers in this village are poor, and cannot buy pesticides and fungacides to spray their crops, so this leads to fungal attacks like mirids and brown pod diseases, that could account for 30% loss in production.

In addition, the South West Region is known for heavy and prolonged rains, and little sunshine, thus,cocoa beans take longer to dry, or do not completely get dry. Because of this, the farmers resolve to use locally made firewood ovens, built with mud bricks, which burn the cocoa beans. The ovens also produce smoke, which deteriorates the quality of the beans.

Drying with the locally made firewood oven, burns beans

Also, the farmers complain of poor farm-to-market roads. Rain has rendered most roads from cocoa farms  impassable. During rainy seasons, from Dschang, one can take 2 to 3 days to get to Wabane and it costs about 15000FRS. Farmers sell their crops at very cheap prices to local buyers, because they cannot afford to pay trucks  that transport crops to big markets .

Breaking Ground encourages us all to support these farmers because, cocoa production offers significant oppotunities for poverty alleviation, and sustainable development if the necessary infrastructure and support is facilitated.