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The Gushie Women's Shea Nut Collective says Tipagaya: We Appreciate.
Meeting with Collective leadership to discuss Just Shea Program silo operations.
(Gushie Women's Shea Nut Collective Leadership)
Just Shea has been working with the women shea nut harvesters in Gushie for the last 3 years. Our initial program provided safety gear--boots, coats and gloves--to the harvesters to protect against the ubiquitous snakes. But we always dreamed of constructing a silo, a cooperative barn where the women could store their shea nut crop, thereby regularizing the supply chain. This allows them to sell for a longer period and capitalize on higher market prices later in the season.

So we set out to raise the money to raise the roof on a new collective building. We have super smart dedicated folks on the ground in Ghana and, in February, our Project Manager started the construction based on the volunteer design efforts of our advisors. When we arrived on March 19th the structure was up and just need a roof, floor, windows, plaster, and a ribbon to cut to open the doors.

We scouted cement in the markets, toted water and stones and painted with the bevy of dedicated colorfully swathed Ghanaian women. The conditions were hot, dusty and oh so joyful. We drove the last nail in with 15 minutes to spare as the elders, chiefs, harvesters and children marched to the new blue metal door of the silo. We all blessed the building, snipped the ribbon, and it was official...the Gushie Women's Shea Nut Collective is open for business.

Thanks to all of you.

Now don't think we are done, because we still need to construct a drying area, storage shelves and put the finishing touches on the building. So if our story, if these resilient, hard-working women’s story moves you, please donate another dollop to their cause and send this along to friends who might toss in with us.

"Tipagaya" in Dagbani means "We Appreciate" and we do, the women of Gushie do, and all of your names are there on the building to show you. Look for your name on the Tipagaya plaque here along with more photos from Gushie.

Tipagaya,
Danielle and Wicki

This is what the Just Shea Program silo looked like when we arrived.
So many women came to help with the construction.
The village is arriving for the opening ceremony.
A moment of thanks with the Gushie chief.
Zaharatu Zublim: It's real!
The Gushie Women's Shea Nut Collective silo is open for business!




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One Village Planet-Women's Development Initiative and Just Shea
www.ovp-wdi.org | www.justshea.com
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New York, New York 10026