Initially, when Sunripe Farms started in 2013, it focused on providing agricultural training and employment for the segment of the population the SageView Foundation was helping in a remote rural area in Rwanda. Over the years, it has transformed into a place of professional growth, education and opportunity for the 100 staff and their children. Over 80 children receive a full scholarship, two meals a day and uniforms for local schools, with more and more graduating and attending college to further their education.
This past February, the SageView Foundation team traveled to Rwanda to meet with the local government to initiate the building of a medical clinic and learning center to benefit the local community. They conducted training to improve productivity and profitability in 2022.
To the left is Francine, a scholarship student the SageView Foundation sponsored to attend college in 2019. Today she is a valued member of the marketing team at Sunripe Farms, and helps with deliveries, invoices, and price negotiations. She partners with Ntganda [in
green], a former military officer, who drives the truck and helps with the heavy lifting.
Each location they deliver to is vastly different - from high end supermarkets, as seen here, to the smaller local shops where Francine’s quick wit and sharp bargaining skills set her apart. The fresh fruits and vegetables grown at Sunripe are of the highest quality and are widely sought after.
On the left, Kathryn Coen, Foundation Director, and her husband Dave Coen pose for a photo with Barnabe, a current scholarship student who just completed his first year of agricultural college. He takes a three-hour bus ride to class every Saturday and Sunday so he can continue his work as a supervisor on the farm during the week. “Barnabe is motivated, kind and an asset to the team. He’s a joy to be around and really loves what he does, so much so that he wanted to go to college and bring the knowledge he gains back to Sunripe,” said Kathryn Coen.
Education has always been a core focus of the SageView Foundation, and many of the employees have joined a Savings Group that meets weekly to record their progress. “Earning and managing money is crucial. The basics of saving and budgeting set up our employees for success today and in the future,” added Coen.