Advancing agriculture in Rwanda with the help of refugees

by Marlen Tetun

from Enactus Ruhr-Universit├Ąt Bochum e.V. - Projekt Gaia Greenhouses

Our solution

Gaia Greenhouses aims at fighting malnourishment and scarcity of harvest in Rwanda by providing Burundian refugees with a holistic business model of modular greenhouses, bio-fertilizer, a storage-system for the crops and a macro-nutrient analyzer to guarantee the most effective use of the resources present. We will employ the refugees and teach them how to produce and use our solutions which allows them to become service providers, generating higher harvest yields for their native customers.

What's the business opportunity for host and refugee community

By instructing and educating the refugees, they will gain an advantage in agricultural knowledge and practices that the local small farmers usually do not possess. By providing them with our holisitic farming concept and the necessary background-knowledge, the refugees will be able to become farming advisors to their Rwandan customers, optimizing the Gaia solution to the individual needs and thereby becoming indispensable and valued, gaining respect and acceptance in the host community.

How has it been implemented and what impact it had

Up to now, we have tested and improved our solutions and products in Germany successfully. At the moment, our German partner, a research institute, optimizes the technological aspect to our project while RVCP, our partner on-site, validates that the agricultural aspects work effectively in Rwanda, using exclusively local materials. Together with RVCP, who will be the point of intersection between the local farmers and refugees, we will guarantee and promote sustainable and profitable exchange.

Our Skills and Experience

Rwandan small farmers use rather primitive methods in their agricultural endeavours. Even tough large companies invest in Rwandan farmers, they only chose farmers that have enough land to make the effort profitable for them. Meanwhile, we believe everyone should benefit from advancements in agriculture, so we want to give them the opportunity to benefit from a greenhouse just as much as from our knowledge on what best to plant, how and when to fertilize and how to profitably sell their goods.