“I'm a member of Duhaguruke Dukore Cooperative. We are 38 members, 33 women and 5 men. We share 800 trees. We harvested 1.5 MT of coffee cherries this season. Before I joined the cooperative, I couldn't stand in front of people like this to express myself, but now I can. Today our husbands respect us because we bring money to the household and the cooperative purchases health insurance for all family members. When we started in coffee, Rwacof was there to teach us how to take care of our coffee trees and after harvesting, we would always deliver to Rwacof. Since 2016, Nestlé and Rwacof have given us training and farming equipment, for instance, pruning saws, secateurs, and pesticide pumps,” said Jeanne Muhayimana, a 33-year-old mother of 4 and an advisor at Duhaguruke Dukore Cooperative.

Jeanne is one of the 38 brave members who established Duhaguruke Dukore Cooperative, seeking a change in their lives.

Duhaguruke Dukore translates into English as “let’s stand up and work.” The cooperative was created by women who were not satisfied with being stay-at-home mothers with limited influence on household decisions. It comprises 38 members – 33 women and 5 men, and was established in 2007 with a monthly contribution of 100 francs per grower (which was equivalent at the time to 0.15$ per month.) Since then, they bought a plot of land where they planted 800 shared coffee trees.

These women are supported by Rwacof – Sucafina’s subsidiary in Rwanda, which buys their coffee cherries. Today, thanks to their dedication, perseverance, and strength, they are independent, empowered and most importantly entrepreneurs who are able to take leadership roles.