Mavuno’s team has been hard at work developing a pilot plantain flour business. We have worked with our community partners to identify producers, build a dryer in the village, fine-tune the production process, and research market opportunities. We are happy to announce our first product has hit the shelves! This flour will be sold in local markets, and the revenue generated will be reinvested in other business development ideas to further promote income generation and sustainability for our community partners. This is a big step in continuing to empower local leaders to build business and end extreme poverty in their own communities.
1) A young girl eats dinner in Beka, an Mbuti (pygmy) village in North Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo. Mbuti communities in DRC often suffer from the compounding effects of extreme poverty and societal discrimination and exclusion from nearby majority Bantu populations. The village of Beka, with around 60 inhabitants, has engaged with Mavuno through community-driven agriculture and sanitation, and has shown remarkable progress: in the second season of 2016, Beka achieved a 100% repayment rate on their agricultural microloans.
2) A reluctant goat receives an injection of antibiotics during a Mavuno veterinary inspection in Irango, North Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo. Mavuno provides a host of technical assistance to farmers in its Grassroots Organizations, aimed at boosting profitability and sustainability in their agricultural businesses
3) A makeshift ferry shuttles goods and vehicles across the Semiliki River after a bridge collapse in North Kivu, Democratic Republic of the Congo. DRC's infrastructure is famously poor, suffering from government corruption and mismanagement at all levels. Individuals and communities are often left to make up for governmental inadequacy; this ingenious ferry is a prime example.
Mavuno just wrapped up a week long staff retreat reflecting on 2016 and looking ahead to 2017. 2016 was a big year for Mavuno; we expanded from 3 villages with 206 households to 10 villages with 888 households. During the year community members harvested 42 hectares of land, generating 177,005 kg of crops!That’s equal to the weight of nearly 30 elephants! These crops generated $32,900 for families to use for healthcare, school fees, housing improvements, business development, and savings for the future. Over 400 rabbits were born through our livestock program, further contributing to household income. The economic impact has been significant, but the social impact has been even greater. We have seen families strengthened and communities come together. Children are healthier and happier, parents have hope in the future, and individuals believe in their ability to produce change.This is just the beginning; we look forward to partnering with you as we continue to empower local leaders to end extreme poverty in eastern Congo. From all of us at Mavuno, thank you for making 2016 a success!We couldn’t do it without you!
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