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Meet Zaina: President of BOMFA
Zaina Kapachika is a life force. She points to a field of growing crops and grins. “We make oil from the sunflowers,” she explains. “It’s a cash crop.”
When you meet Zaina, she is likely to take you by the arm and confide in you like an old friend. She is exuberant, joyful, and charismatic. She is also smart.
“We continue to invest in BOMFA because Zaina knows business,” says a member of Orant’s board. “We trust her.”
Zaina is the President of BOMFA—Bowe Mission Farmer’s Association—a farmer’s cooperative in Kasese, Malawi. BOMFA currently has 660 members. Its primary purpose is to provide farmers with in-kind loans for fertilizer and seeds. After harvesting, BOMFA collects farmers’ crops to process, package, and take to market. This allows the co-op to achieve good prices from reputable buyers in bulk. As a result, co-op members can enjoy a more stable income.
While BOMFA offers membership to all people, it especially aims to empower women. This is what most inspires Zaina. “I have a desire to see the women grow individually by giving them capital to start businesses of their choice,” she says. Often, women in Malawi must rely on men to provide for themselves and their children. Women are not given the same opportunities to try, fail, and succeed in their own ventures. But BOMFA changes that status quo. Zaina provides mentorship and farming guidance. She derives joy from “giving women hope and encouragement to press on and achieve what they desire in this life.”
This year, Zaina is excited to acquire a tractor for the co-op. The tractor will make it possible for farmers to increase their farming capacity. Additionally exciting, Zaina is working to certify and approve BOMFA’s sunflower oil production through the Malawi Government. This will allow BOMFA to sell its sunflower oil in the commercial market.
Zaina exhibits many qualities of exceptional leadership: hard work, intelligence, and heart. Orant is pleased to continue offering BOMFA yearly financial support. The value return of our investment is significant. Thanks to BOMFA, farmers can earn higher and more livable wages. Consequently, they can grow their businesses, educate their children, and contribute to their community. We believe this model creates local and sustainable stability.