Project Description

The inhabitants of Bafata have learned to question old traditions. The village that is listed as a project on various relief organisations lies almost in the exact middle of the West African country of Guinea Bissau. The relief organisations do not only support the sustainable cultivation of rice and vegetables but also promote the battle against forced marriages of young girls and female circumcision – both of which were so far never questioned but passed on as traditions from generation to generation.

Nuria and Zamora live in Bafata. Only a few years ago the older Nuria would have soon been declared marriageable and possibly been forced to marry a much older man. Very likely her genitals would have soon been mutilated with a razor blade or a rusty knife, as it was still tradition in Bafata not too long ago. Guinea belongs to the African countries in which female circumcision of young girls is practised nationwide – despite the fact that it is officially illegal. Most women suffer under the consequences of this procedure for the rest of their lives.

Nuria and Zamora belong to a new generation of young girls. Their parents are informed and educated and have learned to separate themselves from old, previously unquestioned traditions – also thanks to the education provided by the relief organisations. They have passed on this attitude to their daughters. “If we have children some day we will make sure that these things are not done to them,” Nuria is convinced. Then she runs off, to the neighbouring village with her friend Zamora. She wants to pass on her knowledge to the children there so that they and their parents will begin to question the old traditions as well …