The West Foundation’s Impact on TechnoServe

TechnoServe helps people lift themselves out of poverty by harnessing the power of the private sector. We are grateful for the longstanding support from The West Foundation that has spanned decades and helped to further TechnoServe’s mission. Together, we are fighting poverty by helping people build regenerative farms, businesses and markets that increase incomes.

(From contributing writer: Andrea Stepanski, Manager, Major Gifts, TechnoServe)

With generous funding from The West Foundation, we have improved our Monitoring and Evaluation systems, supported smallholder farmers in Tanzania’s tea industry to improve their livelihoods, and are currently supporting women-led households in Peru’s cocoa-growing communities.

Good cocoa is the starting point for good chocolate, but it can also be the beginning of a better life. No one understands this better than the hardworking women cocoa farmers who are participating in our project funded by The West Foundation in Peru. Since 2017, the project has helped nearly 100 women increase their production and improve the quality of their lives.

Prior to the project, many of the women farmers struggled for years to sustain their farms without access to traditional agronomy programs and faced severe challenges in providing for their families. The West Foundation project aimed to close this gap by providing unique and targeted training to reach women successfully and help them to lift themselves out of poverty.

Thanks to support from The West Foundation, participants are learning best practices in agronomy, financial literacy, and leadership. The project’s goal is to help the women feel empowered as farmers, economic agents, and leaders in their communities.

The results have been outstanding—the 90 participants in the project have experienced average yield increases of 62% just last year alone, which has created a 75% increase in gross income. Additionally, all 90 participants were able sell their cocoa production to cooperatives and direct exporters and 40 participants now have the Rainforest Alliance seal.


Photo courtesy: TechnoServe