Burkina Faso tragedy hits close to home
By Mark Lukowski
CEO and child sponsor
Placing my feet on African soil has new meaning. Late last week, I landed in Ethiopia, one of three African countries where Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC) works — the others being Burkina Faso and Ghana — and I’m happy to be here.
It wasn’t long ago that I was destined for Burkina Faso. The evening before my plane was set to take off, news reached Canada that 30 people had been killed and more than 120 were taken hostage in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso. My travels to that country were set aside, but my thoughts immediately went to the families and children in the sponsored communities we serve, CCFC’s country-office team as well as those who were put in harm’s way. Later, I learned six Canadians humanitarian workers had also lost their lives.
Thankfully, none of the children in our sponsored communities or CCFC staff were injured in the attacks.
My thoughts and prayers go out to all the families whose lives will be forever altered due to this tragedy, but as we forge ahead, I’m heartened by the word’s of Jeremie Ouangrawa, our country director in Burkina Faso: “We can’t let ourselves be shaken by this tragedy,” he wrote in an email to CCFC staff. “The team will continue with the same determination to make positive change and build a transformative program.”