We closed out this year’s project with a presentation to USAID at the U.S. Embassy. The presentation went very well – the concept and framework were well received, and the pilot program will be given an explicit budget in the upcoming extension with TechnoServe. We will be on the lookout to see how the pilot program progresses! Once all of the kinks are worked out, we hope it will be expanded into a much more comprehensive program with the potential to impact tens of thousands of farmers.

The trip home was surreal, as I couldn’t believe six weeks had already passed. I reflected on this amazing experience, all the great people we met, the beautiful sights we saw, and the delicious food we ate. Without a doubt, this is one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences that has had a deep transformational and formative impact on me.

 

I am eternally grateful to have been a part of TechnoServe’s mission to empower farmers through business solutions. I have come away with a newfound appreciation for all of the hard work that it takes to produce both chocolate and coffee. There is an entire industry relying on smallholder farmers to produce enough cacao and coffee tor the rest of the world.

Lastly, I want to say a big Thank You! to everyone who has made this trip possible, especially the PIMCO Foundation and TechnoServe staff, who have made this an incredible experience. This is definitely one of the highlights and pivotal points of my personal and professional life, and one that will always be remembered.

The Volunteer

Gustavo Guevara

Project Manager, Technology

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