Empowering young coffee farmers through training in human rights

Sustainable agriculture
In 2023, Swisscontact joined Nestlé’s initiative “Plan Nescafé” in Honduras, as a technical ally on training and capacity building on human rights, prevention of child labour and women’s economic empowerment in the Honduran coffee sector. 

Honduras is the sixth largest producer of coffee in the world. Coffee is the main agricultural export product and the main livelihood for approximately 102,000 families in Honduras. These families are comprised of about 300,000 persons under the age of 30. 

Partnerships for local economic development and sustainability

Nestlé's "Plan Nescafé” seeks to build a sustainable coffee growing system that protects forests, empowers coffee growers, and promotes human rights. As a technical partner, Swisscontact supports the CoHonducafé Foundation, which implements “Plan Nescafé” in Honduras. 

Esther Díaz received diploma.

Strengthened competitiveness for local coffee producers

In coordination with Nestlé and the CoHonducafé Foundation, the project reaches young coffee producers in Honduras, through on-site training and virtual course modules on the education platform of the Jóvenes Caficultores Programme. These comprehensive trainings address two very relevant issues of the coffee sector – the prevention of child labour and women economic empowerment – impacting participants' understanding of why it is important to further advance human rights and female economic empowerment, in order to stay in business and remain competitive.

Training 5500 Honduran coffee farmers on the best social practices to create fairer working conditions and develop the next generation of coffee producers

Together with Nestlé, Swisscontact created a training programme to educate young Honduran coffee farmers on human rights regulations, women empowerment and the prevention of child labour. The programme also prepares the young coffee producers with knowledge of industry trends and the needs of the future market.

By empowering the youth and women in Honduras, this initiative not only ensures the future of coffee farming but also paves the way for a brighter and fairer industry where everyone has the opportunity to thrive.

Learn more about our work in Nestlé's Creating Shared Value and Sustainability Report 2023 (page 37).

Meet Esther Díaz from the coffee producing community of Los Puentes, Comayagua, Honduras.

Esther Díaz, 20-year-old coffee farmer

I'm excited to share my journey with Plan Nescafé’s Young Coffee Farmers initiative, specifically focusing on the deep-dive course on Human Rights and Economic Inclusion in coffee I took part in.

I am about to graduate with a Technical Baccalaureate (high school) in Agriculture. My family settled in Los Puentes four decades ago and has been deeply involved in coffee and commerce. Recently, we've expanded into goat breeding. What I love most about my community is the peace and tranquility we can enjoy here. 

Awareness-raising, social responsibility and a communal effort to safeguard human rights

From the 40 hours we dedicated to learning about human rights and the prevention of child labour, I walked away better equipped with the ability to identify potential situations that could constitute a situation of child labour – which we want to avoid. I now can comprehend principles of human rights and recognise that children have the right to education and dreams. I feel a responsibility to safeguard the future of the children in our community. 

"By sharing the knowledge and putting it to practice in our daily lives, we can create a collective effort in our community to prevent child labour and uphold human rights."
Esther Díaz, coffee producer

Empowering entrepreneurship in young rural women

Sometimes I think about my future as a young woman in a rural community. The course included very useful subjects where my girlfriends and I learned for the first time about leadership, entrepreneurship, and business development. The lessons on personal finance emphasised the importance of tracking production costs.  

I believe women can successfully contribute to the coffee industry. My aunt, who manages her own farm is my inspiration. Besides my agriculture studies, I dream of launching my own business in floral arrangements and costume jewelry, to have different sources of income.  

Training session

Fostering gender equality in agriculture

Reflecting on the past, where family farms were typically inherited by men, I imagine a future where both men and women have equal opportunities to learn and progress in their life projects. Collaboration is key – at home, on the farm, and in business.

I encourage young coffee farmers to seize learning opportunities, like Nestlé’s Plan Nescafé initiative and the Jóvenes Caficultores programme, implemented by Fundación CoHonducafé and Swisscontact. I am eager to apply these lessons and make positive contributions to both my community and the coffee industry.

This project is financed by Nestlé. It is part of the Swisscontact Development Programme, which is co-financed by the SDC (Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation).

Sustainable agriculture
Empowering coffee producers through training in human rights
Swisscontact joins Nestlé’s initiative “Plan Nescafé” as a technical ally on training and capacity building on human rights, prevention of child labour and women’s economic empowerment in the Honduran coffee sector.