The Peanut Butter Cooperative
One of the aims of Kar Geno is to provide financial freedom by creating income-generating activities for HIV affected women. We do so by running entrepreneurship training, giving women the know-how and skills they need to set up their own micro businesses.
Kar Geno has assisted a group of 15 women to set up a self-sustaining Peanut Butter Cooperative that yields regular income for its members. These remarkable mothers have turned their lives around one step at a time. Their self-esteem has improved as they are now able to pay for their children’s school fees, food and basic necessities. After some initial difficulties, the community has finally accepted the Peanut Butter Cooperative members, and the relationships with their families have improved.
The members of this cooperative share a plot of land on which they cultivate the peanut plants, locally called “the ground nut”. Once planted in March, the plant grows and is nurtured for several months, until harvesting time around July. It takes 1-2 weeks for the nuts to dry, depending on the weather. After de-shelling the nuts, the women roast them on charcoal fires using specialist equipment. Finally, after the nuts are roasted, the women grind them into the final product – the peanut butter. The peanut butter is then packaged and sold in the market.
Initiatives such as this one contribute to the improved well-being of our village and its hard-working inhabitants which is a great reward for the work of Kar Geno.