CHICAGO, IL (November 27, 2019) – Covenanters have the opportunity to help 2,000 coffee producers in the Democratic Republic of the Congo by giving to the Karawa Coffee Project on #GivingTuesday, December 3.
Paul Carlson Partnership (PCP) and its partners in the African nation are working with small-scale coffee producers to reduce extreme poverty, enhance food security, and build the economy through the revitalization of coffee production and export in the Karawa region in northwest DR Congo.
Coffee production and export used to be a major cash crop in DR Congo before civil wars and coffee wilt disease destroyed the economy and many farms in the 1990s. What once was a source of income for many families became only a memory. Some coffee trees survived, but it was no longer possible to export large quantities.
“In our region, we usually rely on mission support to develop the community,” said Gaspy Zongalinga, a coffee producer with the project. “My hope is this coffee will bring economic empowerment so that for us, as a local people, we’ll be able to finance local initiatives and support the local church.”
Robusta coffee – the variety grown in the region– makes up 45 percent of the world’s coffee market, and demand is expected to trend upward in the coming decades.
PCP is funding the initial stages of the project, beginning with purchasing disease-resistant seedlings and other materials needed to ensure the producers have the proper equipment and tools for agriculture training.
Café Africa, an NGO based in DR Congo, are the coffee experts who are training the producers in Karawa how to successfully plant, nurture, harvest, and export Robusta coffee locally and internationally.
The Covenant Church of Congo (CEUM) is PCP’s long-term partner, and the coffee producers are members of the church.
The entire project is designed to be owned entirely by the coffee producers. This will be achieved through teaching good agricultural practices and organizing the producers into a cooperative or association in order to provide long-term support for export and other services, as well as safeguard producer interests in marketing their crops.
As you plan your Christmas shopping, please consider helping to share the boundless love and mercy of God through your contributions on #GivingTuesday. Donations can be made online.
To make a gift by mail, checks may be sent to the Paul Carlson Partnership, 8303 W. Higgins Road, Chicago, IL 60631 and write “Giving Tuesday” on the memo line.