The Association of Women Entrepreneurs Organic Mushroom Project
Corralar is a community of approximately 700 mainly low-income residents located in a mountain valley about 2 hours west from San Jose, Costa Rica’s capital city. The community is relatively isolated, lacks paved roads, and has a high underemployment rate. According to national data, up to a third of local households are headed by unemployed, single mothers.
This project will support the Association of Women Entrepreneurs of Correlar (AWEC) in commercializing organic oyster mushrooms to help create employment opportunities and a stable source of income for women in the community. The project will provide the needed infrastructure for cultivating mushrooms and will provide women with a two-month entrepreneurship workshop, which will focus on financial management, marketing, and leadership. The participating women will raise awareness in their community about the ecological and nutritional benefits of mushrooms.
The women have completed their business workshops and have created marketing tools, such as sales brochures and business cards. They recently presented about their mushroom business to parents and teachers at a local high school, and have plans to present to a local eco-resort. The mushrooms are harvested monthly, and the women are on track to increase production and supply to match the high demand from the community.