Though the art has not been recognized locally, internationally, straw basket has become the world’s most patronized product.
This is because environmentalists worldwide have seen it as an eco-friendly product hence raising its demands tremendously for the past years in the Western world.
But in the light of the novel coronavirus, the demand for straw basket has seen a rapid declined since the countries which usually patronized them are worse affected with the virus.
In view of that, Basket weavers in the Bongo District of the Upper East Region are appealing to the government to consider their art in its stimulus package as most of them are now in dying hunger.
According to them, their business is virtually collapsing as they do not longer receiving contracts from abroad as they used to hence can not meet a three square meal.
Narrating the untold hardship which the novel coronavirus has brought to them, the Executive Director of Blessing Basket Association Mr. Abdulai Asuah, said they are looking up to the government to see how it can use its stimulus package to assist them.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has brought hardship to our weavers and we want to thank the government for its readiness to support small scale businesses. We want to ask the government to extend its stimulus package to cushion our business. And we want such a package to be a separate one from any other packages because our peculiar circumstance is worth dying for.
Mr. Asuah made this comment in Nyariga community a suburb in the Bongo District.
The Association in its quest to protect its members against the spread of the virus made some donations that amount to GHS28,780.00 to its members amidst the COVID-19.
The donation items including Veronica buckets, hand sanitizers, carbolic soap, liquid soap, tissue, and nose masks.
Mr. Asuah added that the support also seeks to bring onwards benefits to thousands of people in the community.
“In fact, our support for 800 weavers shall have an immediate impact on about 2,400 persons (weavers and their immediate family members). Indirect beneficiaries are estimated to be over 20,000 persons since the message will be widely circulated to all communities and society.”
Receiving the items, the weavers appreciated the gesture made by their director and pledged to put the items into good use.
Blessing Basket Ghana and its partners from the USA, Ten By Three and Trans Chemical have been working collectively to improve the lives of basket weavers in the Nyariga community whose are mostly women between the ages of 50 and 70.