Fuseina Iddris is a Senior High School graduate, from a semi-middle class family at Ablekuma a remote suburb in Greater Accra Region. Her family source of livelihood is selling Charcoal. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), about 80% of Ghanaians still use charcoal for cooking and other purposes.
Its production, which is mostly popular among the Sisalas, is a major source of income for peasant farmers in Ghana. When asked, how did she discovered the business, she replied by saying “it is generational, when it comes to the production and selling of the charcoal, my parents and grandparents were all involved in the charcoal industry. Besides, I am a Sisala”
Fuseina’s commitment in promoting her cherished business, which she took from her mother has seen maximum transformation to the point of exporting charcoal to neighboring African countries, Asia, Europe and America. ‘’My goal is to expand this business and to create employment opportunities for young girls to be self-sufficient, so they would be vulnerable’’ she said.
Despite its environmental challenges, successive governments have initiated policies and education towards the use of gas cylinders for cooking. Fortunately for her, the alternate adoption, has been steadily but slow.
Production difficulties and unfavorable weather conditions, especially rainy seasons coupled with problem of transportation has been the bane of the business ultimate target.
Strong as she is, Ms Fuseini Iddris is willing to achieve successes in the charcoal industry. She called on all stakeholder to work together for effective management which includes environmentally friendly programs to ensure greener and cleaner environment. And urge other jobless ladies not to feel shy in engaging in charcoal business.
Sources: Humanity Magazine
Writer: Bala Muhammed, [email protected]