TechnoServe’s work with people fighting poverty around the world is full of striking stories and images. Each month, we share a few of our favorite photos from the everyday beauty of our clients’ journeys toward better incomes and better futures.
This month’s photos illustrate three ways that TechnoServe is using technology to fight poverty. This work is supported by TechnoServe Labs, a team of people based in Kigali, Rwanda, and Silicon Valley. TechnoServe Labs works to identify, test, and implement promising technologies to deliver market-based solutions to poverty on a global scale.
Find out more, then vote for your favorite photo below.
TechnoServe’s Photo of the Month: December 2023
How high can a drone fly? High enough to capture hundreds of images of cashew farms in Benin. These images provide an abundance of agricultural information, which is then analyzed on a wide scale with machine learning. This information helps agricultural trainers spot farmers who could benefit from better farming techniques. With improved agricultural practices, farmers can increase their productivity and incomes. In Benin, geospatial technology is contributing to sustainable cashew production and increased trade and exports.
Cashew allows me to live. In the years before I participated in training with BeninCajù, my two hectares produced five bags. Now I’m selling 15 bags this year.” — Biba Saka Koto, cashew farmer in Benin
Related blog post: Technology, Innovation, and Climate-Smart Cashew Production
When COVID-19 hit, TechnoServe continued to provide vital support to businesses on the verge of closure thanks to digital learning. By adapting training courses to WhatsApp, entrepreneurs were able to continue learning remotely. As a result, business owners like Catarina Bié had the resources to fortify their businesses against the effects of the pandemic. Since then, these digital training programs have continued to develop and progress. Now more farmers and entrepreneurs in hard-to-reach areas are able to receive training, thanks to the benefit of remote learning through digital means.
Before, I wasn’t able to think differently about how to make my business profitable. Through the program, I discovered that we could use social media to learn and improve business skills.” — Catarina Bié, entrepreneur, Mozambique
Related blog post: How Digital Business Training is Helping Entrepreneurs in Mozambique
Women entrepreneurs in sub-Saharan Africa are more likely to become entrepreneurs than men, but because of restrictive gender norms, their profits are 38% lower. The “Janete” radio program was developed to give women information and support in an easily accessible format. This radionovela tells the story of a fictional female business owner named Janete who encounters challenges that listeners may find relatable. By sharing her tips about how to be a successful woman entrepreneur, she is providing tools and knowledge for others to overcome obstacles in their businesses.
Today, I can do my business without going through any issues with my husband – be it psychological or emotional – thanks to Janete’s tips.” –Isabel Matola, entrepreneur, Mozambique
Related blog post: A “Radionovela” Role Model Inspires Women Entrepreneurs in Mozambique