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Cecilia’s Story: Divine Chocolate

December 1, 2009

Cecilia’s Story

[tweetmeme] My name is Cecilia Appianim. I am 47 years old. I have three kids. One female, two male. My village is Asemtem in the Central Region. Fair Trade has helped us a lot. Because of Fair Trade, women can come out boldly and take part in Ceciliaevery event. Before it was not like that. Before we would stay at home and watch the men. And we would work with our husbands and they would take the money, put it in their pockets, and when it came time to buy food or pay school fees they would say the money is gone. But Kuapa has opened our eyes to see that everything should be 50-50. So if a man has one vote a woman has one as well. If the men come together to make a decision then the women are there to take part as well. So now we are empowered and the men they can not cheat us again. Today, as I am here, I am the national finance secretary of Kuapa Kokoo and also I am a village recorder. I buy the cocoa in my village. I show the farmers how much they will get paid, check their beans to make sure they are fine quality, and I make sure they know that the scale is free and they are not being cheated. I am the first woman in my village to be a recorder. When I was elected only the men ran against men. But now that I am the recorder more people bring their cocoa to Kuapa because I tell the women and they tell their husbands and the women know how much Kuapa does for them so they bring us their cocoa. Also because of Fair Trade we have some many projects for women. We make soap, tshirts, batik, we grow other food stuffs and sell in the market and then put some money into the credit union for hardship times or to pay our children’s school fees. My appeal to the women in the US is to support Fair Trade and to support Divine. Then we can get more premium to do even more projects for women in Ghana.”

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