Creating better opportunities for children in Côte d’Ivoire by providing greater access to education
January 28, 2022
Since 2014, Cargill, alongside CARE, the International Cocoa Initiative (ICI) and the Ministry of Education has helped build 49 schools in Côte d’Ivoire. Today, we celebrate the construction of eight new schools in the country. To mark the occasion, Cargill held a ribbon-cutting ceremony at one of the community schools, located near the SOCAAN cocoa-growing cooperative in Côte d’Ivoire’s Adzope region.
Endorsed by the First Lady of Côte d’Ivoire Dominique Ouattara, a champion of children’s right to education, dignitaries from the Côte d’Ivoire government witnessed the school’s official hand-over to local community leaders.
Honored guests speaking at the ceremony included Mamadou Binaté, Head of Cabinet of Minister of National Education and Literacy; Head of Cabinet of Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development; and Mrs. Patricia Sylvia Yao, the Director of Cabinet of the First Lady and President of the National Council of Child Labor Monitoring.
“The construction of these schools is essential to achieving a thriving cocoa-growing community,” said Jean-Marie Delon, Sustainability Directory for Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate in West Africa. “Through education, children can learn the skills necessary to prepare them for their future professional life”.
A holistic approach to ending child labor
In partnership with the International Cocoa Initiative, Cargill has developed a three-fold approach that encompasses prevention, monitoring and remediation activities. The approach is integrated in Cargill’s Child Labor Monitoring and Remediation System (CLMRS) and brings networks of local coaches and agents to visit farms year-round.
In 2020, Cargill monitored 38,588 farmers with the CLMRS. We continue to aggressively scale up coverage in Côte d’Ivoire as well as Ghana and Cameroon.
Educating the next generation of cocoa farmers
Cargill is committed to helping everyone in cocoa-growing communities access education. Efforts to end child labor and the construction of schools in the region are seen as critical to the achievement of thriving cocoa-growing communities.
“Our goal is simple: provide well-built, well-resourced primary schools that stay open year after year,” said Delon. “By investing in communities, they become more resilient and self-directed and can thrive for generations to come.”
Together we can scale up efforts and magnify impacts with regards to supporting thriving cocoa growing communities. Are you interested in contributing to protecting children in our shared cocoa supply chain? We have a range of solutions we will be happy discuss with you. Please sign up for a sustainability workshop here.