Sedex Sustainability Award for The Body Shop International
On 22nd March The Body Shop International won the Sedex Sustainability Award for Community and Collaboration for their work to design and deliver a hugely impactful Farmers Voice Radio project for shea nut collectors and butter processors in northern Ghana.
This multi partner collaboration brings together The Body Shop International, Tungteiya Women’s Association, Cargill Zor, Solidaridad, the Lorna Young Foundation and Global Shea Alliance (GSA) in a project that aims to strengthen the sustainability of the shea supply chain in northern Ghana, by connecting women shea producers to the knowledge they need to improve their economic resilience. The collaboration has developed a 3-year project that uses the Farmers’ Voice Radio methodology to produce the radio programme Kpihi Saha (Shea Time) that raises the voices of women shea producers on Ghanaian radio stations, Zaa FM and Simli Radio, to address the issues that matter to them.
Kpihi Saha is broadcast four times a week in local language, Dagbani, to an estimated audience of 400,000 people, and discusses quality shea nut collecting, processing and marketing, health and safety, diversifying livelihoods and protecting the shea parklands, as well as broadcasting local shea market prices. In addition, 5720 women will receive training on gender smart business skills, collective marketing, health and safety, climate smart agriculture and income diversification. The project complements GSA’s Action for Shea Parklands initiative, with community level advocacy focussed on sustainable management of the shea parklands.
The Body Shop’s Virginia Sampaio visited the project at the end of 2022 with Farmers' Voice Radio's Hannah Clark, where she met shea nut collectors and butter processors who feature in the weekly radio programmes. Saudatu told us “The Kpihi Saha radio programmes have transformed my life. I used to add spoiled nuts, but the programme taught me to move the spoiled nuts and now I get better shea butter- it is high quality. I educate a lot of people about the Kpihi Saha radio programme […] It makes me feel important, that I am an ambassador”.
Rakia Shaibu shared how access to information has changed her practices and the impact of this on her family, “I never imagined I could make 200 Ghana cedis profit from my shea nuts, but now I am able to make between 300 and 400 Ghana cedis. This school academic calendar when my husband was unable to pay for our children’s school fees, I did not struggle to pay.”
This project is funded by the Fund for Responsible Business (FVO), as part of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, The Body Shop International and Cargill Zor.
Virginia Sampaio from The Body Shop International meeting the Kpihi Saha Programme Reference Group in Yipielgu, Ghana Oct 2023. Credit: Hannah Clark, Lorna Young Foundation
Rakia Shaibu, a shea nut collector and processor and mother of six in Yipielgu. 2023. Credit: Fatah Mahama, Solidaridad West Africa