Sparrows is lucky to work with organizations doing incredible work for women’s role in the coffee industry. In celebration of Women’s History Month, we’re highlighting several of the women-driven initiatives Sparrows supports – and how you can support them, too.
JNP Coffee sources exceptional coffees grown in the mountains of Burundi, where women still lack full property ownership rights or equal access to education, as well as representation in the country’s economy. JNP uses the power of specialty coffee to transform the lives of women growers by paying them directly for their work, encouraging community and challenging customs as they become central participants in their local economies.
In recent years, JNP Coffee also purchased the majority of coffee grown by women members of the Burundi chapter of the International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA) and supported other organizations that teach women financial literacy and leadership skills. The success of these programs for the women in Burundi is a dream fulfilled for their founder, Jeanine Niyonzima-Aroian. When she visits women growers, they always take time to dance together in celebration of the joy and community they feel.
Every purchase of our Burundi Turihamwe coffee – sourced by JNP – supports more inclusive economic development initiatives for Burundi farmers.
For the month of March, Sparrows is donating a portion of bag and brewed coffee sales of Newsstand Blend to Root Capital – an impact investment organization that aims to grow rural prosperity and the resilience of farming families around the world. Root Capital has a focus on gender equity, and investing in agricultural enterprises that help level the playing field for and boost their economic opportunities. To do so, Root Capital:
- Seeks out and unlocks the potential of businesses committed to gender equity
- Builds women's financial and agricultural knowledge so they can thrive, personally and professionally
- Encourages and supports women-led design of new products and services that benefit the whole community
- And demonstrates a model for investing in women in agriculture to help catalyze gender-smart policies and practices
They have invested $63 million in loans to gender-inclusive and women-led businesses, created 541 additional jobs for women, and reached over 554,000 women with their programs since 2012.
Last year, Sparrows introduced our TransFARMation Blend to support Food 4 Farmers – an organization that helps coffee-farming families in Latin America who experience seasonal hunger to have access to good food, every day. Food 4 Farmers supports women in coffee-farming communities through a variety of programs, including the Mercadito Nutri-Hogar – a women-run organic farmers market they developed with the SOPPEXCCA coffee co-op in Jinotega, Nicaragua. This program aims to empower women in Jinotega to increase production and consumption of local, fresh food, while teaching them financial and administrative management skills, as well as gender issues.
Keep an eye out for the return of TransFARMation Blend later this year to support Food 4 Farmers’ work with women in coffee-farming communities. Or, make a donation and learn more about their organization here.