In Guatemala, MOCCA trains over 900 cocoa producers, of whom 40% are women. One of the associations of smallholder cacao farmers that we partner with through MOCCA in the Alta Verapaz region is the Association of Integrated Development "OX EEK" Santa Maria Cahabón (ADIOESMAC). ADIOESMAC, whose members are indigenous Q'eqchi’ Maya, champions inclusive leadership with women, men and youth involved in all areas of cacao production, from business administration to community production processes.
Pedro Tiul Caal, a cacao producer and ADIOESMAC agriculture promoter, talks about the importance of MOCCA’s technical support for long-term growth. “The association can prepare for the future, for future generations. We, as parents, are grasping for something to share with our children… I believe that young people are being given an opportunity to stay close to their families.”
With Lutheran World Relief’s support, ADIOESMAC established a network of youth community trainers who provide technical assistance to partner families so they can share the cooperative’s progress. Young people have also been critical to expanding the use of Lutheran World Relief’s Cacao Móvil (Mobile Cocoa), an open-source application designed to help farmers, cooperatives and agricultural extension workers improve crop production and processing while promoting inclusive growth, gender equity and social justice.