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Evariste Sorgho

Evariste Sorgho, better known as Eva, is an artisan who works primarily with wood.

Eva was brought up in a village called Garango in the Central-East region of Burkina Faso. He attended school until the age of 14, but then left to become a farmer. At the age of 18, he moved to Ouagadougou to start work as an artisan, where he began training as a leather-worker, taught by another disabled artisan, Samuel Zigani. They worked together for 3 years, after which Eva began learning how to make educational toys out of wood.

Eva has two daughters, aged 5 and 7, who both attend school in Ouaga.  His typical working day begins at the workshop at 7am and ends at 7pm. If he has a lot of orders, these hours can be longer, and he can end up sleeping at the workshop for days at a time when large orders need to be completed. In his view, the biggest challenges facing artisans in Burkina Faso are the lack of tools and workshop spaces, insufficient demand, and not enough training opportunities. The latter, he believes, is incredibly important. For artisans with disabilities, he says that all these problems are heightened. Importantly, however, he stresses that all artisans, disabled or not, must take their work very seriously and remain focussed in order to be successful.

Eva has been a member of Tigoung Nonma (TN) ever since its creation in 2005 and, since 2011, he has been the Vice President of the organisation. He says that being a member of TN has helped him greatly over the years, from providing him with the machines he uses, to allowing him to have training, which has in turn helped him bring in more orders and enable him to make a better living for himself.