Coffee is addictive and fuels the lives of many people. If you are a coffee person, often you can’t even start your day until you’ve had a cup or two. Howard Schultz and Starbucks took the coffee craze to another level. Coffee was no longer the pot you brewed at home and gulped down before work. They transformed coffee drinking into an experience to be savored. This led to tons of coffee shops being erected as demand increased. As comfortable as we are in coffee shops, one thing we need to consider is where the coffee is coming from. It takes a lot to make coffee, and sometimes this can mean workers are unfairly compensated. Land of a Thousand Hills is a company committed to making a difference to coffee lovers, Rwanda and the world.
Challenging Past but Promising Future For Land of a Thousand Hills
Government called for the church to help make a change. Jonathan Golden, who founded Land of a Thousand Hills, answered this call. The idea is to provide a fair wage to the farmers of Rwanda, which helps improve their quality of life, while also providing great fair trade coffee for us to enjoy. Learn more about Land of a Thousand Hills here.The history of Rwanda is not a pleasant one and has been addressed in popular culture. Don Cheadle, who you may know as War Machine in the Marvel Universe, starred in a movie Hotel Rwanda. This movie does a great job of explaining the sad history of genocide in Rwanda. As sad of a story as it is, Jonathan Golden, is working to help make a change. The change is happening right now, one coffee bean at a time. The reality is, genocide had far reaching effects that have left Rwanda with illiteracy and poverty problems, to name a couple.
I love the idea from Land of a thousand hills because it doesn’t portray the natives of Rwanda as another helpless charity case. This allows them to earn their wage while improving their life. Often times, people think money is the answer, but that isn’t always the case. In my opinion, while those in need will accept money, they would also like the opportunity to earn their living with dignity. This means they want to learn skills to help them grow into a stronger position, where they won’t slip back into poverty again. In this case, Jonathan has helped provide a living by way of fair trade coffee while paying the workers fairly.
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Jonathan’s generous efforts don’t stop at just providing coffee. He knows that health is a serious issue in Africa, and malaria is a real problem. Therefore, in order to keep fighting malaria, nets are being provided to families. Malaria is a serious mosquito-borne disease that can be fatal. According to World Health Organization estimations, in 2015, 438,000 people died from malaria, and most were children in Africa. Read more about malaria here. The purpose of the nets are to block mosquitoes as well as repel them with safe insecticide.
Hopefully, this story shows that although people experience challenges and setbacks, their future is not doomed. I hope this also encourages people to find creative ways to help those in need. While donating money is often the easiest thing to do, we can also look for other ways to empower those in need.
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