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  • Writer's pictureJon Ferguson

Cooperatives Gather for Workshops on Better Governance

Updated: Jan 21, 2022

During the first week of December, cooperatives, organizations, and clients participating in the Café Selva Norte Project gathered members from both the northern and southern coffee-growing areas of Peru for a workshop on strengthening governance and good management practices. It is very rare that cooperatives from these different regions reunite. This meeting was made possible by the Urapi Sustainable Fund and proved to be very beneficial.

The gathering took place in the beautiful city of Quillabamba, located nearly a 6-hour drive from Cuzco. The journey taken by cooperative members from Jaen in the north took several additional flights to arrive in Cuzco, making this a unique and rare occurrence for many of the participants.

The producers were hosted by COCLA, the coffee cooperative located in Quillabamba, and learned about the governance that COCLA has been carrying out and have also shared their experiences on the management of their organizations.

The cooperatives that participated in the event are as follows; CECAFE, CEDROS, EL MILAGRO, GALLITO DE LAS ROCAS, UNION Y FE, JUMARP, SELVA ANDINA, ORIGIN COFFEE.

As a focus for the gathering, participants discussed the need for strengthening the governance of cooperatives, consolidating the social bases of participating cooperatives, providing useful financial tools, and further provide management training opportunities for cooperatives. Some of the restrictions caused by COVID have made this progress difficult in the past year, but as restrictions ease, the gathering was able to take place.

The workshop accomplished the facilitation of positive exchanges between cooperatives, sharing experiences of the realities producers face across the nation. This work has allowed a better understanding of how to improve positive management strategies and continue the work of sustainable development projects within their communities.

In the coming years, ECOTIERRA would like to extend the invitation to their project participants located in Colombia to join with the Peruvian cooperatives, broadening the exchange of experiences and strengthening of the coffee value chain.

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