Livelihoods that are derived from agriculture work, such as coffee production, are important but the ability of these income generating activities to transform the economic realities of families and communities is limited because of other constraints. Notably, rural women provide much of the food, water and energy security for their families. Regardless of income source and in the absence of suitable infrastructure in rural communities, these tasks are dependent upon access to healthy natural resources. In addition, women in sub-Saharan Africa derive 30-50% of non-farm income from natural resources.
As natural resources decline due to poor resource use and climate change, women are forced to spend more time and money acquiring the supplies necessary for basic survival. Resource degradation is an acute problem in rural areas with over 60% of the world’s poorest people living in ecologically vulnerable areas. As natural resources are degraded, food crop and coffee production are jeopardized and poverty rates climb. Trapped in a vicious cycle, the inability to generate adequate revenue further contributes to greater resource loss and increased inequality.
This project seeks to reduce poverty and improve the health and well-being of women in rural communities in Rwanda through sustainable coffee production, clean energy use and access to finance and markets