Rupununi women seeking markets for products
Guyana Chronicle
March 22, 2004

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THE Rural Women’s Network is pursuing markets for tomato products out of the village of Parishara in the North Rupununi.

According to a report from the Government Information Agency (GINA), the network facilitates training in small businesses for rural and hinterland women. It also facilitates marketing as far as possible. The group recently hosted a training project in the production of tomato ketchup.

Since then, the North Rupununi women have begun to produce jam and other products from tomatoes. According to Mrs Bibi Andrews, Coordinator of the Rural Women’s Network, the products will soon be taken to Jamaica in search of a market.

The group is also looking at the possibilities of having Omai Gold Mines adopt the Region Ten Salt Fish Processing Project.

The Network is facilitating a one-week computer-training programme towards the end of the month.

President of the Rural Women’s Network (RWN) Mrs Pauline Sukhai has said that the organisation would welcome sponsorship of hinterland persons as well.

According to Ms Andrews, the programme was initiated to provide skills for those rural and hinterland women, who are unemployed and are willing to acquire skills.

The group also facilitates rural and hinterland development by preparing project documents. It hopes to work along with other agencies and the Ministry of Health in the dissemination of information about national programmes such as combating HIV/AIDS.

The RWN has also established links with some medical practitioners. The partnership has since helped a number of hinterland and rural persons to access health care.

Among the persons to benefit from this action was an 18-year-old female, who almost lost her eye. The young woman’s eye was saved after she received medical attention.

In its quest to empower women and young people of rural and hinterland communities, the RWN has approached the Social Impact Amelioration Programme (SIMAP) for assistance. That assistance will focus on training.

Other aims of the group for this year include enhancing RWN’s outreach and stepping up efforts for pursuing markets for their handicraft production and agro-industry products.

With the continued support of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), the Rural Women’s Network is committed to enhancing its social and economic programmes.

The group plans a visit to Region One ((Barima/Waini), where it will donate sewing machines to women to enable them to provide uniforms for the school population there.