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Comisión de Acción Social Menonita (CASM)

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Public Statement 2014

Title Apoyando la Cadena de Valor de Cacao y Mejorando el Ambiente
Type of organization Nongovernmental organization
Country Honduras
Duration  Three years
IAF Funding   $298,005
Counterpart Committed $161,520: $40,620 in cash; $120,900 in kind
Number of direct &
indirect beneficiaries
Direct: 450 
Indirect: 2,700
Primary program areas Agriculture/food production; the environment

Organizational background:
CASM is a nongovernmental organization that was founded in 1983 and became legally constituted in 1991. Its mission is to further human development centered on the principles of the Mennonite religion: love, service, justice, solidarity, peace, nonviolence. CASM received $336,359 from the IAF between 2007 and 2010 (HO-242).

Project Objective:
To protect and preserve the vital Choloma watershed in the department of Cortes and its ecosystem and improve local farmers’ production and marketing of cacao.

CASM will work with farmers in 15 communities in the municipality of Choloma, department of Cortes, to improve their production, processing and marketing of cacao. Toward that goal it will encourage the application of “agroecological” practices compatible with the responsible use of the environment, including the vital local watershed. The project will benefit 450 Hondurans directly and another 2,700 indirectly.

Rationale for funding:
This project has been developed in collaboration with a broad array of farmers, including women, and their producer organizations. It promises a new economic activity for women in the community, which should include the processing and marketing of cacao products from lesser-quality cacao seeds. The project is consistent with the focus in the Honduras portfolio on rural development and conservation.

Learning Opportunity:
Can farmers, producer organizations and women’s groups can all improve their sustainability by implementing changes in the production, processing, transformation, and marketing of cacao?