Tea-Buying Center Built and Open for Business


On Monday July 26, 2010, the new Nyanchonori-Riomanga Tea-Buying Centre was opened for business. Construction commenced in January, 2010 and was completed early in July. The project was supervised by the HKA-Keroka Committee under the guidance of chairman James Omanga. Local labor was used and just over $7000 was donated by HKA for labor and materials.

The official opening of the center was attended by students and teachers from Hopewell Valley Central High School, NJ and by HKA members and took place during the School’s Kenya 2010 trip. The Nyanchonori community turned out in large numbers and there was great excitement. The ribbon was cut by Mrs. Melissa Weeks, Chairman of HKA in the presence of Area Chief, Mr. Barnabus Onderi, who was representing District Commissioner Mr. Solomon Abwaku.



After the opening ceremony, the visitors were given a demonstration of the operation of the center. Tea – two leaves and a bud – is brought to the center for inspection and weighing. The weights are transmitted via a bluetooth connection to the tea factory and a receipt is issued to the farmer recording the weight and the amount of money added to his or her account for the purchase. Right after the opening ceremony, complete with speeches from officials, community leaders and farmers, the tea farmers were lined up to sell their tea.

The Nyankoba Tea Factory, located on the Keroka-Kisii road next to the turnoff for Nyanchonori, is a collective factory owned by 13,400 local farmers. It employs 200 workers and is a major contributor to the economy of the Nyankoba Ward. Many members of the community grow tea and deliver it to local tea buying centers for delivery to the factory.



The Nyanchonori community began the construction of a tea collection center to spare the villagers a 6 km round trip walk carrying a heavy load of raw leaves to the nearest tea buying center in Rigoma. The project ran out of money, and one of the walls partially collapsed in a storm in December 2008. The community requested our help to complete the center and make it operational. The following pictures show the unfinished building, building under construction, and the building on opening day, as well as pictures of the construction. Now that it is completed and operational, the tea collection center relieves the farmers of the village and their children from spending the equivalent of an entire day each week walking with their tea to the nearest collection center.







© 2012 Hopewell-Keroka Alliance | Site Admin