14 Apr 2015 Alumni Project Fund Winner
Operation Groundswell’s Alumni Project Fund was created to support our alumni in their quest to create positive change around the world, while continuing to engage with OG and our global community. This year, our Alumni Project Fund Committee received yet another batch of strong proposals for incredible projects. Year after year, our alumni show us just how committed they are to shaping a more just, sustainable, and ethical world and we are so proud to support them in their endeavours.
After much deliberation, we are excited to announce this year’s recipient of the 2015 Alumni Project Fund! Congratulations to The Farmer’s Hub Yoghurt Project of Nyeri, Kenya, which has been awarded a grant of $10,000 to support entrepreneurial and economic growth within this community!
The Farmer’s Hub Ltd. is a collection of 38 women’s groups located in Nyeri, Kenya and made up of over 700 members. The women in these groups are all dairy farmers who are currently forced to sell their milk for less than market value, severely hindering their economic growth. Under the Farmer’s Hub model, the women will not just collect raw milk but also process it into yoghurt to add value to their product and market their products directly to potential buyers. Doing so will remove the middle men who have exploited these women for years by buying their raw milk at very low prices, only to sell the milk for a much larger profit at markets. Converting the milk to yoghurt also gives the product a longer shelf life and its production will bring more jobs and income into the local community.
The Farmer’s Hub aims to support and empower rural women groups in Nyeri, create new employment opportunities, and ultimately, reduce the rates of poverty and improve the community’s living standards. Production of yoghurt has already begun and the Alumni Project Grant will go towards creating a much larger-scale yoghurt production system within the existing structures of the organization.
This project was proposed by our 2015 Peru: Mind & Body alumni, Evelyn Murray, who has also worked abroad with the Farmer’s Hub in Nyeri, Kenya. She is currently completing her Bachelor of Arts in International Development at the University of Guelph and will be leading a custom program for OG this summer in India.