Sustainable Agriculture, Food security and Solar Tunnel Dryers Project in Black Volta Basin/Ghana- West Africa
The Black Volta Basin in Ghana and the Upper West Region in particular is noted to be one of the poorest regions where indigenes live on less than a dollar a day, the standard set under the Millennium Development Goals. The inhabitants who are mostly farmers engage themselves in both minor and major season farming and also livestock rearing to generate income for their livelihood and sustenance.
Post harvest losses in Ghana are estimated to be about 50% of the food grown as our food are perishable and 25% of harvested food grain, which resulted in loss of millions of dollar nationally year in year out. To control the loss, various food preservation techniques including the use of solar tunnel dryers have been developed and explored. This makes it possible for farm produce to be processed into various forms (powder, dry chips, etc) to widen the marketing and sales net to increase income. Farmer sensitization activities through demonstration and training on use of the improved Solar Tunnel dryer will make the technology known to most farmers across the country to enhance nationwide adoption. Intensifying such workshops is a sure way to sustain the impact of the technology. Farmer accessibility to the technology is critical to the sustenance of its impact. Large scale of Solar tunnel drying centers in the fabrication training workshops of the improved Solar Tunnel dryer will enhance farmer accessibility to the technology across the country and sustain its impact. It is also expected that livelihoods of these farmers would be positively impacted. Again, training of farmers on fabrication of the improved Solar Tunnel dryer will give them an opportunity to earn more income, thereby improving living standards of these local artisans and the economy at large. The overwhelming majority of the population of the Black Volta basin depends on rain-fed farming for their livelihoods. However, climate change makes rain-fed agriculture increasingly unreliable. The decrease of the annual mean of river flow and the predicted increase of temperatures and evapotranspiration would seriously impact the Black Volta basin and the Bui dam. Hogfe Foundation has been working with the target area communities for some time now. We had sent 40 foot container worth of hospital beds and utensils to Tolon clinic. We have very skilled people on the ground or field. We know that inspite of the fact the target area is one of the poorest areas in the country, they are hardworking people and engage in agriculture. Climatic variability and erratic rainfall were the natural factors, while poverty; high population pressures and insufficient knowledge of sustainable soil and water management techniques by majority of households compounded the problem. The ultimate effect of this phenomenon was increased poverty, resulting from unstable and fallen per capita income, reduced biomass of grazing and browsing plants, as well as diminished sources of domestic fuel. The long-term socio-economic effects on land users in the district included food insecurity, high school dropout rates, and break down in family structure, rural-urban migration and soil vices. We would like to Support for sustainable farming practice in the district to enhance food production. The project reduces the large quantity of food lost through rotten by drying The tunnel dryers will help to close the hunger losses and also prolong the shelf life of the produce. This will ensure an all year round supply of staples. Transboundary Diagnostic Analysis indicates that the Black Volta Basin is experiencing high levels of water quality and flow degradation, coastal erosion, increased sedimentation of rivers, invasive aquatic species, loss of soil and vegetative cover and ecosystem degradation as a result of factors related to climate change, livelihood practices and poor governance and mismanagement of the basin’s natural resources. Overall, high population growth rates in the target area remain a cause for concern in terms of food security, poverty alleviation, risk mitigation, disaster recovery, environmental sustainability and lack of hygienic drying technology to dry agricultural products.
The direct beneficiaries consist of the farming households within the Black Volta Basin communities where the dryers shall be installed and the surrounding communities engaged in primary agricultural production. Indirect beneficiaries include the stakeholders along the produce value chain (agro-input dealers, aggregators, traders, processors, and consumers) within and outside the black Volta basin. The Ghana portion of the basin covers an area of 18,384 km2 constituting 14% of the basin and six (6) sub catchments including; Lerinord, Nwokuy, Bui, Dapola, Noumbiel and Bamboi. Political administratively, the basin has 26 districts (of the 216 District demarcations) in Ghana.
In Ghana the Black Volta basin lies in the Upper West Region, Northern Region and the Brong-Ahafo Region. Upper West Region is bounded to the north by Burkina Faso and to the west by the Black Volta River which forms a border between Ghana and Burkina Faso. To the east it share borders with the Upper East Region and to the south with Northern region. The region lies between longitudes 1o 25‘W and 2 o 50‘W, and between latitudes 9o 35N and 11oN. The Black Volta River Basin is a trans-national river system that stretches from the north to the south through Mali, Burkina Faso, Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire, and from the west to the east, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana. The basin is drained by the Bougouriba, Gbongbo, Grand Bale, VounHou, Sourou, Wenare, Bambassou, Bondami, Mouhoun (main Black Volta), Tain and Poni rivers as main tributaries.
The Upper West Region (UWR) that hosts the Basin Office is about 8,370km2 in the Basin and makes about 6% of the basin & 42% of the portion in Ghana.

Purpose of the Project

To economically empower people living in the Black Volta Basin/Ghana- West Africa
via Agriculture and Food security

Objectives and advantages of the Project

  • To provide farmers with solar dryers to efficiently process and preserve their farm produce whiles reducing their time burdens.
  • To promote greater market access for locally grown, family-farmed, sustainable, agricultural products coupled with a fair allocation of the added value for all the economic actors involved in that specific product chain; production, transformation, retail, consumption
  • To provide avenue for farmers to secure higher prices for their farm produce.
  • To help farmers secure and maintain a large market for their produce.
  • To improve the living standards of farmers in the district.
  • To reduce the level of unemployment in the district by educating more youth to enter into agriculture.

Products are dried in a closed cabinet. Therefore, food is more hygienic as it is protected from dust, insects etc.
Dried agro-products can be stored for longer periods of time at lower cost.
The transportation costs to market are reduced because of lower volume of agricultural products.
Drying with solar dryers is much faster than open sun drying and the food retains its nutrient value
Many products increase their quality in terms of color, taste, etc. and thereby achieve a better price when dried in a solar dryer.
As it utilizes free solar energy, the operating costs for solar dryers are lower than those of conventional dryers (using electricity, gas or kerosene etc.)
Dryer help protect natural resources.
Professional drying Technology
Operation in arid and humid regions
Easy assembling and dismounting
Reduction of drying time
Improved product quality
Hygienic drying conditions
Protection from insects, climatic conditions, dirt
Universal application also for sensitive products
Low operation costs
Operation without fuel consumption
Grid-independent operation
Self-regulating airflow, simultaneous temperature adjustment
No continuous supervision



Street children are found in almost every Ghanaian city. According to UNICEF, there are approximately 30,000 street children in Accra alone. Fifty seven percent (57%) of children in Ghana are forced either to work on their own initiative or by pressure from their parents, due to economic hardship, for their livelihood. They have either dropped out of school or have never and cannot attend school at all. Poverty is an important force that pushes the children onto the street, since their poor parents can barely afford the basic necessities of life and therefore cannot send their children to any school, be it basic school or vocational, because of the fees charged.

While some parents or guardians will ask the children to resort to begging during the day to help supplement the family income, other children go to the streets on their own volition to try and earn the money they need. Many street children are also victims of domestic violence who flee from the family. Children are sometimes branded as witches or wizards and often ostracized from their communities or tortured to either extract a confession or to cure them of their possessiveness. This is another means by which the population of street children increases.

In many countries, street children have been stigmatized, forced to live on the fringe of society, have no identity within their community, and are not given the needed protection. They are therefore compelled to live and work on the street without safe parental or adult care and support. More than half of these children live alone or in a group with other children and sleep on pavements, in abandoned houses, or in their own makeshift shelters made out of discarded cardboard. They rely on each other for support but are, never the less, extremely vulnerable to abuse and exploitation.

The abuse of drugs and other substances is rife among the street children in Ghana, a classical case being the sniffing of a substance referred to as glue.The street children have cited suppression of hunger, keeping warm especially in the evenings and soothing the pains of reality as the reasons for sniffing the stuff, but all these are temporary if not illusionary. Girls in this situation often quickly turn to prostitution for subsistence, with a ripple effect of unwanted pregnancies which may either lead to life-risking illegal abortions or unsolicited childbirth that further increases the population of street children. In fact, sources have it that second and third generation street children can be found at some cities in Ghana currently. With little or no protection, street children are prone to a complex of diseases such as malaria from mosquito bites, tetanus from contact with infective materials during the daily chores, cholera from the filthy and unhygienic conditions under which they live, TB from congestion in their makeshift shelters, and sexually transmitted infections such as gonorrhea, syphilis, and even HIV/AIDS due to promiscuity and/or sex deviance. Other exploitative practices such as child trafficking and child labour are visited on the children by unscrupulous adults who capitalize on the vulnerability of such children.


To protect vulnerable children from violence and exploitation, integrate street children into society and reunite them with their nuclear or extended families.

To establish, equip and run a technical skills centre (TSC) to give street children and youth the relevant skills and opportunities to restart life off the street.
To create conducive environments for transforming street children into respected family members and responsible citizens in society.
To ensure that at least 3,000 street children receive assorted vocational training instead of being exploited as unskilled laborers.

Provision of temporary accommodation for the fourteen to eighteen-year-olds would undertake a “pre-apprenticeship”, after which they can begin a formal dual apprenticeship in a workshop and at a vocational school (one day a week).Instructions would be given in the basics of arithmetic, writing, reading, and craft skills.Here the children would be medically, psychologically cared for and prepared especially for the return to the society and their families.

Problem statement and Justification
Billions of people do not have access to clean drinking water globally. The problem is particularly dire in Ghana where diarrhea has been reported by UNICEF to cause 25 percent of all deaths of children below the age of five each year. The figure is even higher in the northern part of Ghana where about half of the population gets its water from wells, ponds and dams that usually dry up soon after the rains and are often contaminated with disease-causing microorganisms. In the Tolon constituency of the Tolon-Kumbungu district in the northern region of Ghana, access to potable drinking water is a major challenge for majority of the people. More than 70% of the inhabitants of this constituency may have never tasted pipe borne water. Additionally, most of the wells and ponds that are closer to homes than the dams dry up shortly after the rains have stopped due to the limitation in capacity and very high evaporative demand at that time of the year. The dams which are mostly several miles away from the villages remain the only source of water supply for the people and their livestock in the dry seasons.The inhabitants, especially the children and women, have to walk these distances every single day to fetch water, using lots of man hours in the process. The water pots or barrels with capacities ranging from 30 to 50 liters are carried on their heads to trek these distances and they neither boil nor treat the water before drinking which is very dangerous because diseases such as bilharzias, diarrhea and the guinea worm are very common in this part of the world. Several man hours that could be used for other economic activities are lost annually either through time invested in travelling the long distances to get water or through temporary incapacitation from the water related health problems mentioned above.


There is the dire need for interventions that will improve the quality of the water that is being used by these inhabitants. Practically, the ceramic water filters ,PAUL filteration system and living water filteration system seems the most affordable and sustainable intervention This will be combined with the use of the seeds of, Moringa oleifera (Moringa) that has been demonstrated to have not only coagulation and sedimentation but also disinfection properties, to further increase the quality of the water. Moringa is fast growing, adapted to marginal lands, requires no special treatments, and develops from seed to seed in one rainy season. It will also involve the training of at least 1000 people in the planting and nurturing of Moringa oleifera as well as how to use the seed in purifying water.



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Expected outcome
It is expected to improve access to potable water for at least 30,000 people within the first year of implementation. Incidence of water related diseases will be reduced by at least 40% in beneficiary communities. Improved health due to reduced incidence of water related diseases. Increased productivity and enhanced livelihoods due to recouped time hitherto lost to incapacitation from water related diseases.

HOGFE Foundation primarily concerned with creating access to information on girls  and young women rights or related issues through interaction, advocacy, documentation, education, networking  for positive change. We believe that taking an affirmative action for the empowerment of the girl child is an issue of justice.

Background and Rational of the Project:
Girls are less likely to go to school, stay in school or do well in Africa. Education plays a particularly important role as a foundation for girls’ development towards productive adult life. It is also an intrinsic part of any strategy to address the gender inequalities that remains prevalent in many societies. The achievement of girls’ right to education can address some of societies’ deeply rooted inequalities that disadvantage and expose girls to vulnerability. Basic education for girls leads directly to better reproductive health, improved family health, reduced fertility rates, as well as lower rates of child mortality and malnutrition and a key in the fight against the spread of HIV and AIDS. Further, educating girls and women is an important step in overcoming poverty. Millennium Development Goals 2 and 3 reflect the commitment that female education has a strong relationship with many other development indicators, and that education is an indispensable tool for women empowerment and the reduction of poverty.In some communities in Ghana, girls are married when they reach puberty, which means that they either drop out of secondary school or never enroll.The poor and illiterate parents think that they are burden in family and try to give early marriage.

The overall objectives of the project are:
To raise awareness among Drop-out Adolescent Girls regarding their rights, health, social and environmental issue
·  To develop School Drop-out Adolescent Girls leaders in the community
·  To empower School Drop-out Adolescent Girls through providing livelihood training and job opportunities
·  To reduce dowry in the community
·  To reduce early marriage in the community
·  To reduce gender based violence through information sharing

Hogfe Foundation is intended to undertake the above mentioned project to reduce the issues. There are millions of mind-boggling statistics, which clearly indicate that the benefits of investing in girls far exceed the cost of not doing so. Cascading cost of intergenerational death of girls, illiterate families that translate into vicious cycles of family and community poverty, endless conditions that make women and girls vulnerable are reasons enough for taking an urgent action.The Hogfe Foundation girls’ education interventions employ a combination of incentives that stimulate both demand and supply interventions. The demand side interventions include: providing textbooks and other learning materials, community awareness campaigns and providing scholarships for secondary education. The presence of a secondary school in manageable locality increases the chances that rural girls will make the transition from primary to secondary education. In cases were secondary schools are far from home, Hogfe Foundation supports safe residential facilities within a conducive environment for girls. The project would respond by providing safe accommodation facilities for girls.Other interventions include: Use of culturally sensitive approach to hold community advocacy forums – the aim is to educate parents on the important of girls’ secondary education. Such forums are useful platforms to mobilize parents’ involvement and contributions for greater project ownership and sustainability. (i) Strategic partnerships to address gender equality in education. (ii) Affirmative action in awarding scholarships as well as school re-entry policy eg. Support to girls who have drop out of school due to various factors (e.g. pregnancies) to re-join school. Capacity development and training teachers on gender relations, guidance and counseling and other contemporary issues that enable teachers support girls’ education. Organizing girls’ empowerment forums that entail training for girls at school level on reproductive health, HIV/AIDS preventions and life skills.

Multiple benefits of Girls education
(i)Reducing poverty.
(ii)Reducing Teenage pregnancy
(iii)Improving the health of women and their children
(iv)Delaying marriage
(v)Reducing female genital cutting (FGC)
(vi)Increasing self-confidence and decision-making power.


Imagine a world without 9-1-1 or 1-1-0 or 1-1-2 .Without the ability to dial 3 simple numbers and have an ambulance arrive at your doorstep.Imagine having no neighbour with a car who could help drive you to the hospital if you needed to go.Imagine a woman in labour forced to deliver her baby in her grass & mud hut, unaware of complications, her only alternative being to travel by foot or bike to the nearest hospital, 26km away. It was not uncommon for these patients requiring to walk or be carried on makeshift stretcher  for 26 km to travel to the hospital.

This is the reality in Tolon-Kumbungu district in the northern part of Ghana / West Africa. The surrounding villages lack funds for vehicles and without adequate medical resources women and babies are dying in childbirth at alarming rates. Adequate transportation to the hospital is often needed due to infection and other complications. Thousands of children & community members from the local rural areas depend on bicycle to transport a sick, old and frail, stroke patients, heart attack patients, accident patients etc, etc to Tamale hospital which is quite a distance away about 26 kilometres. In northern part of Ghana access to the health care and subsequent transfer to hospital for seriously ill patients and mother with complications in pregnancy is made more difficult because of no ambulance. The hospital and the communities around need an ambulance so that they have a way to deal with emergencies, particularly maternity emergencies and accidents.More than 80% of maternal deaths worldwide are caused by five conditions namely hemorrhage, sepsis, obstructed labor, hypertensive disease of pregnancy and unsafe abortion. Timely intervention is regarded as the key to reducing maternal mortality. Northern Ghana is well-known by high maternal, perinatal and infant mortality rates with the risk of 1 in 27 women dying in pregnancy.Maternal mortality is not simply fatal but is often a cruel and harsh lived experience for Africa`s women.Maternal mortality is a crisis which is likely to worsen.

Every year 340,000 women die during pregnancy and childbirth, mostly in sub-Saharan Africa. The vast majority of deaths could be prevented with better access to an ambulance and obstetric care. However, most women in rural Africa give birth at home, having limited access to transport, being unable to reach a suitably equipped health facility in case of an emergency.

Ambulance services can and save lives by performing field stabilization and by hastening the arrival of critical patients when time makes a difference in the outcome.Life-saving obstetric skills training is found to contribute to a reduction in maternal deaths. To reduce maternal, neonatal, malaria ,water-borne diseases deaths we would like to buy and donate used ambulance in Europe combination with community volunteers trained to identify danger signs of pregnancy and childbirth and provided with pre-paid mobile phones to call the ambulance for transport to suitably equipped health facilities. i) Establishment of a community participation and emergency communication system to increase demand for maternal care. ii) Local female volunteers called “Community Godmothers” would be chosen from the participating villages get trained on safe maternal health practices and to identify signs of pregnancy and birth related complications and received pre-paid mobile phones to call for the ambulance during an emergency.