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David Williamson Rwanda Foundation The David Williamson Rwanda Foundation, which was set up in late 2008 and formerly recognized as a charity registered in Scotland in March 2009, came into existence as a memorial to the life of David Williamson, owner and Managing Director of Glasgow-based coffee roasters, Matthew Algie. The Foundation's aims are to work with the communities attached to the coffee-growing co-operatives in Rwanda - a country whose people and amazing spirit greatly moved David when he visited there in 2007 - to alleviate poverty and assist in the improvement of health and welfare. The Foundation is administered by four Directors; Morag Williamson, Ewan Reid, Ian Bretman and Wyndham James and had its inaugural Board meeting at The Fairtrade Foundation offices in London in April 2009. As well as the Board of Directors, The David Williamson Rwanda Foundation has two very involved Patrons in actor Colin Firth and musician and actor Shirley Manson. Wednesday 21st August 2013 Morag's Scotland Coast to Coast Challenge This September, Morag will be running, cycling and kayaking from the North Sea at Nairn to Loch Leven at Glencoe in order to raise as much money as possible for DWRF. That's a total of 105 miles up and down some very steep hills and across two lochs!! All the money raised from this endeavour will go towards supporting more brilliant projects in Rwanda - like our partnership project with Oxfam which assisted groups of women smallholders (prioritising those living with HIV/Aids) to grow and market pineapples (one of the fastest growing fresh fruit imports into Europe and the US). The charity continues to work closely with Oxfam and other NGOs with all of the money raised going towards supporting people in Rwanda. Morag says that she?s also doing it in memory of David of course. Not quite sure what he'd have thought, although she?s sure he would have decided to give it a go too, just so he could beat her! http://www.justgiving.com/Morag-Williamson1 So please dig deep and donate now. Thursday 05th January 2012 Another Project On the Way We are delighted to be working with Oxfam again on a second project. Oxfam has been associated with the country?s premier research institute, ISAR and facilitated the process of technology transfer for production of planting material for pineapple (called as macro-propagation, a technique suitable for the women to develop micro and small enterprises). As a result, more than 800 women are involved in pineapple planting material production and supply from the first phase of the project. The experience has helped to gauge the interest of women and its feasibility in the Rwandan context. This has also given the idea about using the model for exploring other planting material especially passion fruit and tree tomato. As such, the proposed project aims to support women in marketing the planting material and increase the production of planting material. This will help to further develop women as one of the major producers and suppliers of planting material in the country. To date this has brought acclaim both from within Rwanda from the Ministry of Agriculture, and from outside as a viable strategy for increasing women's economic leadership within the horticulture sector. Project Objectives: To develop women?s economic leadership in horticultural value chain by: 1.Developing women as micro and small business entrepreneurs in Horticulture planting material production and supply 2.Creating women as traders in plant material supply business Major Activities: 1.Development of cadre of 25 women facilitators to organize field sessions on gender mainstreaming, planting material nursery management, access to credit etc. 2.Partnership with ISAR for technology transfer and certification of planting material 3.Establish women as key stakeholders in country?s horticulture value chain through: - Identification and training of existing 800 and new 700 women entrepreneurs to initiate micro and small enterprises in planting material production and supply. Of which 1260 will take up the enterprise development (about 1200 for pineapple and 60 for passion fruit and tree tomato). - Develop at least 15 women as traders in planting material business who can link women producers with larger market as well as provide business services. - Explore the possibility of organizing women sucker producers in appropriate structure which can facilitate marketing. 4.Engage more than 500 women micro-finance institution to access credit for development of their businesses. 5.Provide technical support to business development through cost-benefit analysis, market analysis, financial product development, development of technology package, enterprise / business model etc. 6.Provide support to operate farmer field schools to initiate the process for certification of pineapple to women?s cooperative. 7.Develop and implement market promotion strategy to generate demand for planting material locally as well as at regional and national level. 8.Develop skills and capacities of partner institutions to implement and monitor the programme 9.Development of training material and project documentation 10.Advocacy of programme model with government and other (I) NGOs as well as Financial institutions in the country through organization of stakeholder meetings. Tuesday 03rd January 2012 New Facebook Page and Twitter We have a new DWRF Facebook page, we've been moved out of Facebook Groups to here... it's a good thing they tell us! We've also moved onto Twitter and you can follow us at @DWRF_Rwanda. To find us on Facebook copy this link: http://www.facebook.com/pages/David-Williamson-Rwanda-Foundation/167228950033755 Wednesday 17th August 2011 Pineapple Update Maggie Carroll at Oxfam Rwanda forwarded this link to us. Great to read the testimony from Miriam in Nyagatare in terms of Pineapple project impact. (see: http://www.totalpolitics.com/blog/168292/pineapples-and-oxfam.thtml) Tuesday 24th May 2011 Open Plaques Project Open Plaques is an innovative crowd sourced catalogue of heritage plaques worldwide. Deirdre Molloy, one of the internet experts behind the project, kindly flagged that David's plaque in Tinderbox, Ingram Street in Glasgow is now registered. By the way, Tinderbox coffee bars raise funds for DWRF by selling mighty fine cups of Rwandan coffee? and this coming from someone who?s drunk a lot of coffee. Have a Tinderbox near you? Try that coffee. Got a penchant for plaques, get to it and contribute to Open Plaques. Monday 28th March 2011 New Project - Ananas comosu? Pineapples!!!! - the ink is just drying on a project agreement we?ve made with Oxfam Rwanda partnering with local NGO and micro-financier Duterimbere. We are contributing to the project with a ?6,000 grant along with the major funder the Jersey Aid Commission. Pineapples are tipped as a one of the fastest growing fresh fruit imports into Europe and the US, this product aims to assist smallholders to acc...