Rwanda’s history is one of beauty and hardship, and in spite of social and economic struggles, the resilience of her people shines through. Volcanic soils, abundant rain, and mountainous terrain are not just conducive for mountain gorillas but also for coffee; since its introduction in the early 1900’s, coffee has been a constant. Now through cooperatives like Dukunde Kawa, farmers have economic stability, long-term environmental sustainability and reliable income as they handle their own business, exporting at or above market prices.
Collective efforts of the U.S. African Development Foundation (USADF) created Rwanda Smallholder Specialty Coffee Company was created including a U.S. Agency for International Development project. The company processes and exports coffee from its six coffee cooperatives, putting power into the hands of the farmers themselves to stabilize and invest in their own lives and in their own corner of the world.