Introduction / History
The speakers of Twi, one of the Bwamu languages, are found in western Burkina Faso. It is an area with scattered trees and a lot of dust. They call themselves the "Bwaba" The climate in this area is hot and dry with the exception of the annual rainy season from May to September. The most typical occupation of the Bwaba if subsistence farming. Typical products are corn, millet, sorghum, and peanuts. They sell some surplus of their crops. Their food is mainly composed of these starches and nutrient and vitamin deficiencies are common. Malnutrition is a problem. Wells are the source for water, but many of them are contaminated and parasites and infections are very common.
The Bwaba live in mud huts with only the barest minimum of necessities, practically no furniture. Furniture is considered a luxury. Clothing is Spartan: men wear western style and the women wear a traditional skirt and a top.
Bicycles and walking are the most common forms of transportation. Recreation includes trips to the market and visiting relatives. Maintaining good relationships with relatives is a necessity for survival. If one is in need of money, food or child care, the relatives are obligated to meet their needs. The eldest male family member maintains authority within a large extended family structure.
What Are Their Beliefs?
Families usually celebrate either traditional religious ceremonies or the Muslim festivals or both. The people remain open to Christianity, but individuals who have converted have experienced family pressures and even persecution. There is a need to learn the Twi-Bwamu language for effective cross cultural missionaries. They would need to share in their culture if they want to help them and share the Gospel with them. They need the Bible translated into their language.
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