Building Markets for Products From Communities We Serve
CEN recognizes that the stimulation of local economies is vital to empowering communities. We have enacted a number of "from the ground up" income-generating initiatives to provide sustainable, meaningful self-employment in communities with limited economic opportunities. CEN's programs foster development of basic skills, which community members can then apply to create infrastructure and improve systems such as education and health care. As these small enterprises grow and owners improve their business and management skills, they will also be able to employ other members of the community through their ventures. In this way, the community creates sustainable sources of income.
Many of the products developed through CEN initiatives are made from materials sustainably gathered from the forest through limited and selective harvesting. Two of our longest-running community projects are the crafting of handmade jewelry and products made of latex from the Amazonian rubber tree. The production and successful marketing of these products clears the path for future participants of CEN programs, showing them that it is possible to achieve economic independence and security through innovative craftsmanship. cCLEAR program participants and community members have also expressed interest in many other products, such as organic honey, products using local plants, fruits and essential oils, and raising pigs. CEN's income-generating initiatives have much room to develop and improve in the future.
Generating additional income is a priority for residents of the communities where CEN works, and we strive to help them to do just that. One way we can help to empower the communities we serve and to strengthen the burgeoning microenterprises they have started is by helping them to sell more products and to expand their markets. At the same time, profits from the sale of these products are recycled to help support our programs.
For more information about individual products and services, please see:
Frequently Used Terms