As the first TWB Rwanda training group continues to learn and grow the business in Kigali, our team has been planning for our next training cohort in Rutsiro District, a cool four hour drive from Kigali. Set atop high terraced hills and overlooking all of Lake Kivu, the training site is stunning. Yet contrasted with this beauty, the district is cited as having the highest malnutrition rates in Rwanda. Though the area, like all of Rwanda, is heavily farmed, most of the crops lack vital micro-nutrients, and meals tend to be made up primarily of foods such as potatoes and cassava.
This is exactly what inspired myself and Markey during our Peace Corps days to start making nutritious foods at home with what was available at market-- from cabbage and carrot salads to peanut flour fortified banana breads to our own peanut butter and fresh rosemary loafs. The ingredients exist locally, but the education surrounding a nutritive meal and balanced diet often does not.
Located on the western edge of Rwanda, this will be TWB’s most rural site to date, and will also be our largest collaborative training effort yet. TWB will focus particularly on delivering our nutrition curriculum along with bread baking and fortified recipe development using local crops, while area based organizations and the current Peace Corps Volunteer at site will continue to deliver life skills, business education, and financial literacy courses to the 18-woman co-op. By expanding throughout both urban and rural areas in Rwanda, we aim to tackle malnutrition and bolster economic opportunity in a very real way.