In southern Benin, the residents of the town of Toffo have organized themselves into groups. They create finished goods from crops: flour from manioc, oil from palm nuts, and more. They also make cosmetics, including soap, shampoo, and ointments. The finished products are then sold in the neighboring towns..
The workers need machines and other agricultural processing equipment to obtain the finished products. Since they don't own these tools, they are forced to rent them, which significantly reduces their net earnings. Rescue and Hope has been involved with 30 women's groups in Toffo since 2012. The NGO decided to build a processing center for craftswomen in Toffo and to equip it with modern machinery such as a straining machine and an improved cooking stove.
The project has a true economic element—providing these women with tools allows them to become more independent, more productive and, above all, to make higher margins. Training on production skills and business management round off the project. Over 1,000 women and their families have benefited from the project: a total of 6,000 people.
The Air Liquide Foundation's grant will be used to purchase new equipment and build a workshop so that the women can continue their work even on rainy days.