After a visit to Rwanda in May by 3 Bpeace volunteers, we are pleased to announce that the Rwandan semi-finalists have completed their business plans. Bpeace advocates are still working closely with the finalists and Bpeace is committed to advising them through the end of 2010.
Over 150 donors supported the Race to Innovation Rwandan finalists, not only providing financial support directly to Herve, Emmanuel and Sarah, but also giving them tremendous exposure and the encouragement to take their businesses even further.
Congratulations to all the finalists and thank you to our voters for your support!
Last month, Bpeace Executive Member Fran Pastore met-up with Sarah in Rwanda and reports: “Sarah is impacting her community in a big way and she has identified an innovative strategy to achieve these goals. She provides tomato and corn seeds and land on which to grow them to impoverished women in her community. Once the crops are harvested, she will purchase them from the women and sell them to the existing accounts as she simultaneously develops additional sales/distribution channels. Sara is creating jobs and opportunities by providing a much needed skill and resources that these women would otherwise not have had.”
Recently, two of Sarah’s three greenhouses were hit with a virus, decreasing production capacity to 50%. Sarah immediately responded by diversifying her crops to include spinach. She then partnered with local farmers to purchase their tomatoes at a reasonable price so she can continue to supply her customers. Sarah believes production capacity will soon return to normal and, despite this setback, still plans to launch new greenhouses in the next two years.
Sarah says: “The money raised through your vote will help me to buy a refrigerated van that will help me to deliver tomatoes from my garden to my clients.”
Sarah will receive 100% of the funds raised on her behalf. Bpeace will disburse the funds in conjunction with the ongoing technical assistance we are providing as we guide her through her business expansion process.
Your vote for Sarah will join with hundreds of others to place much needed capital in the hands of this inspiring Rwandan entrepreneur. Sarah has a vision to help her community by creating jobs and a bridge to better education, improved health, and less violence in the homes and on the streets.
HOW BPEACE SELECTED SARAH
Bpeace's Race to Innovation encourages entrepreneurs with bold ideas in conflict-affected countries by providing them with technical assistance from Bpeace experts and seed capital from donors like you.
Sarah was selected from more than 250 applicants. Bpeace personally interviewed her, and she has been working with a team of U.S. volunteer advisors since December 2009.
Bpeace believes the path to peace is lined with jobs. We work with entrepreneurs in conflict-affected countries to scale their businesses, create significant employment and expand the economic power of women. More jobs mean less violence.®
In the wake of conflict, Bpeace helps entrepreneurs run quicker and bolder. We assist entrepreneurs who share a common vision with us—that employment for women and men is the bridge to education, poverty reduction, improved health, and ultimately less violence; and that jobs for women are vital to women’s advancement and to elevating their peaceful influence on society.
Bpeace is a non-profit organization of business people. We volunteer our expertise, technical assistance, networks and proven methodologies to help Fast Runners expand their businesses, increase profitability, create new employment, retain and attract customers, and access markets and capital. Bpeace tailors a two to three year investment in each entrepreneur—a mix of consulting, training, mentoring, out-of-country apprenticeships and business site visits, employee technical training, equipment, technology, branding and marketing, and networking opportunities.
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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
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