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Coconut-based Women Entrepreneurship Initiative

by Water, Agroforestry, Nutrition and Development Foundation
Coconut-based Women Entrepreneurship Initiative
Organic fertilizer production
Organic fertilizer production

Dear Friend,

Warm greetings and thank you very much for your generous support to our project providing livelihood support for women dependent on the coconuts for their income. The price of copra has plunged to very low since few months back and there is indeed an urgent need to provide women and their families dependent on coconuts alternative means of earning income. Our initial support to them were focused on vegetable gardening and in the processing of crops in order to give value-added to otherwise low market farm produce. This reporting period we are very excited to launch a new initiative and this is the processing of coconut husks and turn this into high-grade organic fertilizer component. Coconut dust from the husks is 100% organic, odorless and retain water in the rooting system of plants making it very valuable. The coconut dust are marketed as is and also as complete fertilizer when mixed with biochar. This is indeed a great opportunity for an otherwise farm waste from making copra. This initiative is being managed by a local women's association and they aim to produce and market 2 tons of coconut dust per month.

Hoping for your continuing support to our initiative.

Very sincerely yours,

Cora Sayre

Marketing of products in local markets
Marketing of products in local markets

Dear Friends,

Warm greetings and thank you very much for your generous support to our initiative improving the livelihoods of small-scale coconut-based women farmers. We are very thankful that the first rains have arrived after 5 long months of severe drought caused by the El Nino phenomenon. Scientists say that the Philippines is one of the countries on the front list of those that will be affected by climate change. With this initiative, our focus is in providing a wide array of livelihoods that women can do in order to increase their incomes aside from the harvests that they get from coconut nuts, namely copra and charcoal. Copra prices have been affected these past few months because the competition which is palm oil is cheaper. 

This reporting period, after successfully producing vinegar, organic coffee, turmeric tea, coco-coir that is used in the production of organic fertilizer, cacao chocolates, vegetables, bananas and pineapple that can be grown under  coconut shade, we assisted the women's association that we helped organize in scaling-up the marketing of their products. Production is one process but we found out that marketing also involve a lot of hard work, starting from making sure that the packaging is at par with the competition, designing attractive labels, promoting the products, establishing competitive pricing and engaging vendors to market the products.

Our strategy is to start local, distribute and sell our products in stores, restaurants, gas stations and in week-end market days. We are starting with vinegar, spiced chili, organic coffee, turmeric powder, papaya pickles, mango, pineapple and papaya. The women's association are now able to display and sell their products in 56 outlets in 3 municipalities here and they hope to expand soon.  

One of the opportunities is the production of Virgin Coconut Oil (VCO) and scented luxury bath soap using coconut oil as the main ingredient as well as scaling-up chocolate production from cacao which grows well under coconut shade. The need is for a cold-press machine, heavy-duty all purpose mechanical dryer and chocolate roaster and grinder. A micro-project is posted separately for this in order to generate interest from donors. The link is, https://www.globalgiving.org/microprojects/coconut-product-processing-and-marketing-equipment/

Very sincerely yours,

Cora

Processed products
Processed products

Dear Friends,

Warmest greetings and thank you very much for your generous support to our initiative providing funding and hand-holding to coconut-based women entrepreneurs. Small-scale coconut farmers have a difficult time coping-up with steady low price of copra since 4 months ago as well as the severe drought brought about by the El Nino phenomenon. The good opportunity is that coconuts are considered "miracle tree" with so many income that can be derived not only from the nuts but by its by-products like vinegar, charcoal, coconut drink, coco coir for organic fertilizer and many more. Added to this is the fact that with a planting distance of 10 meters by 10 meters, the open spaces below coconut trees can be used to grow vegetables, spices, bananas, root crops, cacao, jackfruit, and all shade-loving plants. 

This reporting period we were able to support a group of women and girls scale-up their farm products processing venture comprising organic coffee, chili paste and vinegar, turmeric tea and capsules and pickled papaya. Aside from having a long shelf-life, the products command high price in the market. Instead of working individually, they decided to work together in order to share the use of drying and powdering equipment and the use of a motor vehicle in order to market their products. This time also, we supported the individual gardening activities of 315 women by providing vegetable seeds, seedlings  and organic fertilizer as well as training them how to do gardening using recycled containers and plastic and making fertilizer using organic waste from the farm. We promoted the growing of moringa because it is a nutrition powerhouse. The repayment from the sale of their surplus vegetables is used to engage other women to undergo gardening in their own homes. We are very excited about gardening because aside from income and improvement in nutrition in the family, gardening uses waste resources, improves physical health through exercise and develop warmth and camaraderie among members of the household and among neighbors. 

The vermi-composting enterprise using coconut coir as the main substrate is put on hold and waiting for the rains to come since the heat caused by the El Nino will kill the vermi-worms.

This is all for now and thank you very much for your generosity. 

Very sincerely yours,

Cora

more products
more products
selling vegetables
selling vegetables
gardening in the home
gardening in the home
waiting for harvest
waiting for harvest
Coconut products
Coconut products

Dear Friend,

Happy Holidays to you and thank you very much for your generosity supporting our coconut-based women entrepreneurship initiative. This initiative is indeed very excellent and is starting to provide tremendous benefits to women and their families who are engaged in coconut farming. The coconut is a versatile tree and offers lots of products where income can be generated. One problem for small farmers is where to get the capital to pump-prime their business. At harvest every 3 months, the income from coconuts is just enough to tide a small farming family day by day basis. We are happy to report that this time, we found a way to process coconut water into spiced vinegar as well as produce chili paste using coconut oil as one of the major ingredients. Both products have very high demand and their shelf-life is long. A group of girls formed themselves into an association in order to integrate production and marketing of the vinegar and paste. 

By next week, we will develop a vermi-composting business using coco-peat as the main component as well as producing chacoal from coconut shell. 

Again, thank you very much for your generosity. Special thanks goes to Bliss Unlimited, LLC for the support.

Very sincerely yours,

Cora

De-husking coconuts
De-husking coconuts

Dear Friends,

Warmest greetings and thank you very much for your support to our project improving the economic situation of women who are engaged in small-scale coconut farming. Our special thanks to Coconut Bliss based in Oregon, USA who have provided us with very generous funding in order to pump-prime this initiative. This reporting period, we launched the project in 5 villages here in Misamis Oriental whose main industry is coconut-based by conducting information campaigns and interviews with local women as to what particular enterprise they would like to undertake. In our short-list and by which we will start providing the funds by next week are the following; organic fertilizer production using coconut peat, production of spiced coconut vinegar from coconut water, production of organic coffee using corn and moringa, production of local chocolates from cacao and vegetable gardening for home consumption and for the market. 

Again, thanks so much to Coconut Bliss for the generous support. 

Very sincerely yours,

Cora Sayre

 

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Organization Information

Water, Agroforestry, Nutrition and Development Foundation

Location: Cagayan de Oro, Misamis Oriental - Philippines
Website:
Project Leader:
Cora Sayre
Cagayan de Oro, Misamis Oriental Philippines
$20,420 raised of $40,000 goal
 
6 donations
$19,580 to go
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