Monday, June 20, 2011

2011 DWC Student Volunteers head out...

This past weekend, a Developing World Connections Volunteer Team headed to Gashora, Rwanda to continue to build the COVAGA Innovation Centre. The Covaga Innovation Centre is part of an integrated community development program that has convened several stakeholders from private, public, civil society and academia to contribute to the implementation of Rwanda’s Vision 2020, at the community sector level.
The Covaga Weaving Cooperative is the perfect first development toward a sustainable community of Gashora. This cooperative of women weavers harvests the water hyacinth plant as a renewable natural resource to turn environmental challenges into socio economic opportunities. While ridding local lakes and rivers of the invasive water hyacinth, the Covaga weavers will produce a variety of export quality furniture and home accessory products utilizing the leaves and stem of the plant, and will use all other components of the plant for fertilizer and cattle feed. The weavers currently produce baskets, hats, purses, belts and other artifacts using other natural grasses.

The Internet connections in Kigali and Gashora are intermittent at best. We hope to post as much as we can about the Volunteers, the community of Gashora and the project over the next month. Stay tuned.

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