Child Soldiers and Vulnerable Children, Economic Development, Education , Featured, Notes from the Field

Ben Affleck reflects on his tenth trip to Congo.

Posted on Jun 7, 2017 | 0 Comments

(Ben Affleck recently returned from a week long visit to eastern Congo. This was his tenth trip to the region. Sign up to the ECI newsletter for more updates.) Just back home from a listening and learning trip throughout rural eastern Congo. Seven years ago, I founded Eastern Congo Initiative (ECI), a grant making and advocacy organization, focused on investing directly in the Congolese people. I feel beyond fortunate to have had the opportunity to again return to Congo, seeing friends, visiting with longtime grantees, and some of our newest partners. Hard to believe t...

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Economic Development, Featured

How Blockchain Tech Can Help Congolese Farmers

Posted on Jun 2, 2017 | 0 Comments

Eastern Congo Initiative and BanQu are proud to announce an innovative pilot program to fundamentally improve the lives of farmers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). Currently in the DRC, most farmers have no access to banking services, no reliable information about their productivity and harvests, no access to reliable and trackable economic information, and no possibility of attaining a loan or even basic credit. A massive knowledge gap exists – to the extreme detriment of the Congolese farmer. To address this problem, ECI and BanQu will implement a dat...

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Economic Development, Education , Featured, Peace and Reconciliation

ECI's Dane Erickson speaks to the Brookings Institute on DRC elections & prospects for peace

Posted on May 25, 2017 | 0 Comments

On April 10th, ECI's Managing Director Dane Erickson spoke on a panel discussion at The Brookings Institution with Michael O’Hanlon on April 10, 2017. The panel discussed current security, political, and economic challenges in DRC, and what potential future scenarios might look like. Click here to listen to the full panel discussion. "As you all know, Congo has been one of the fastest growing economic countries in the world over the last five years...that has huge implications for the lion's share of the population who are just trying to get by. When I talk to my ...

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Economic Development, Featured, Success Stories

Kelly Goodejohn On How Starbucks Ethically Invests in Congolese Coffee

Posted by "eastern congo initiative" starbucks "kelly goodejohn" "senate committee on foreign relations" testimony ethical investment "con on May 10, 2017 | 0 Comments

How can for-profit, private companies ensure ethical souring of their products? Kelly Goodejohn, Director of Ethical Sourcing, Global Social Impact & Public Policy for Starbucks addressed this question last week before The US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations in a hearing titled "Value Added Through Private Sector Engagement". While outlining Starbucks' policy of 100% ethically sourced coffee, Ms. Goodejohn expanded upon how the company's partnership with ECI has helped Congolese farmers bring their products to the international market while tripling farmers' income...

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