Balanta, Ganja in Guinea-Bissau

Balanta, Ganja
Photo Source:  Anonymous 
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People Name: Balanta, Ganja
Country: Guinea-Bissau
10/40 Window: Yes
Population: 2,100
World Population: 132,100
Primary Language: Balanta-Ganja
Primary Religion: Ethnic Religions
Christian Adherents: 5.00 %
Evangelicals: 1.00 %
Scripture: Portions
Online Audio NT: No
Jesus Film: Yes
Audio Recordings: Yes
People Cluster: Atlantic
Affinity Bloc: Sub-Saharan Peoples
Progress Level:

Introduction / History

Balanta means those who resist. Ganja is one of the Balanta dialects. They came to live in Southern Senegal in the 1800s, though some now live in Guinea-Bissau.

Where Are they Located?

People who speak the Ganja Balanta language live either in Guinea-Bissau or Senegal.

What Are Their Lives Like?

The Balanta have a council of elders who make big decisions. A person has to take part in an initiation ceremony to become an elder. The Balanta play a type of lute called a Kusunde. They are usually fishermen, farmers or cattle herders. They grow crops such as rice and nuts with cashews being their main crop.

What Are Their Beliefs?

The Balanta people, be they in Senegal or Guinea-Bissau, have their own ethnic religion. This involves worshipping and appeasing spirits and spiritual forces that are at war with the Lord. They believe God is far away. Some are marginally Muslim.

What Are Their Needs?

Like most people in this part of the world, Balanta speakers in Guinea-Bissau need running potable water and electricity.

Prayer Points

Pray that Balanta council of elders will come to Jesus Christ and lead others to Him.
Pray that God will give them dreams and visions leading them to salvation.
Pray for believers to go to them with the JESUS Film and tools for discipling them in the ways of Christ.

Text Source:   Keith Carey