Profile Source: Albert Aartsma
Introduction / History
The people name is Birifor and the language they speak is Birifor which is found in two dialects, the northern dialect, spoken in the Malba region, and the southern dialect, spoken in the Batie region. It is a Voltaic language related to the Dagara language with which it shares part of the vocabulary. The Birifir are found in the south west of Burkina Faso, and also in the north west of Ghana, in the Wa region. Their Birifor dialect again is different. It is believed that the Birifor in Burkina migrated from Ghana many years ago.
What are Their Lives Like?
They live in extended families, in very large mud houses. At some point the sons with their wives and children move away from their father's house and start living on their own. They live off the land and sometimes have small cattle and chickens. Their economy is one of exchange; on the market that takes place every fifth day, they sell their surplus goods and buy what they need. Main products are local home-made goods and livestock. Some goods are still paid for with cowry shells. Malaria is common.
What are Their Beliefs?
The main religion is Animism. Mission activity took place from 1961 onward and a Protestant evangelical denomination is now established in Burkina Faso as well as in Ghana. The language was analyzed and exists in writing. Literacy classes are organized every year in many villages. The New Testament is translated in the northern Birifor dialect (1993) and in the Ghanaian dialect.
What are Their Needs?
Primary needs are economic. Harvests are not sufficient to feed the people all year round. Many other needs stem from this economic need.
* Strengthening of the leadership in the church
* Discipling of new believers
* Better crops and larger harvests
* Good health care
|Profile Source:||Albert Aartsma|