ZF Supported Cassava Cooperative in Ghana
Cassava is a hardy plant that plays a crucial role in the lives of millions of poor people in Ghana where Zakat Foundation of America (ZF) actively carries out development programs. Because cassava can remain in the ground for up to two years, and needs relatively little water to survive, it is a key source of carbohydrates for people in West Africa.
ZF supports a cooperative composed of ten women who engage in cassava farming and processing in the village of Jamam Ghana. The women transform the cassava into gari, a staple food in the region that is made by processing the fresh cassava plant to produce an easily stored, versatile, and affordable granular flour. Due to its popularity, the processing and selling of gari is a good business initiative. ZF is helping the women of the cassava cooperative to move out of poverty and towards self-sufficiency through its micro-credit program.
Initially the women bought the cassava from local farmers and then sold the gari they made for profit. Alhamdulilah now they have been able to acquire a small piece of land where they farm the cassava themselves. They hope to use future profits to expand the farm. They also hope to purchase a grinding machine that will facilitate the gari making process.
Abiba Yukubu, age 38, is a member of the cassava cooperative and is grateful to be a part of a group of women who are committed to helping each other. She says that joining the ZF cooperative has helped her greatly because she is now able to afford schooling for her six children.
ZF’s micro-credit program mobilizes people from disadvantaged communities, encourages them to employ their talents, skills, and initiative for the betterment of themselves and their community. We hope that our donors will support this program generously.