Abakunda Kawa Rushashi Cooperative
The Abakunda Kawa Rushashi coffee cooperative, located in the northern mountainous region of the district of Gakenke is situated at an altitude of 1700-1900 meters and encompasses five distinct zones.
Inside the Abakunda Kawa coffee cooperative there is representation of two women's associations at both of the cooperative's washing stations, Hinga Kawa and Dakundakawa. The women of Hinga Kawa have seen one of the darkest periods of Rwandan history. Since this group includes both Hutu and Tutsi’s, the women made a decision to make poverty their mutual enemy rather than each other; and with this sentiment, they have been able to move forward and heal their community through their leadership.
After the coffee farms in Rwanda were left fallow for a time, several organizations assisted the farmers to be able to produce coffee once again. The Abakunda Kawa Rushashi coffee cooperative was formed in 2004 and became the first Café Femenino Program on the continent of Africa in 2008.
The following year the Cafe Femenino Foundation provided funding for the Hinga Kawa/Cafe Femenino women's group to begin a organic fertilizer project. This project entailed buying piglets and using their poo as fertilizer as well as creating a system of breeding more pigs until each and every woman Cafe Femenino coffee producer had one.
The next year, the women of Hinga Kawa/Cafe Femenino requested funding once again from the Cafe Femenino Foundation to initiate a Conflict Resolution Workshop. This was just completed in 2012 with great success.
The next step for the women of Cafe Femenino Rwanda working in conjunction with the Abakundakawa Coopertive is to complete their organic certification transition.
35% of the women are widows
50% of the women are illiterate