Rigo women seem to be a happy lot!

There’s something that has been making women in the Rigo District of Central Province happy.

Situated kilometres outside Port Moresby, it’s not easy to make a living from selling garden produce.

Many constraints stand in the way, including road, transportation, market availability, tools/machines, and proper skills/knowledge in agriculture.

But for the last years since 2012, these worries have been lifted following the partnership with City Pharmacy Limited group.

Through the Rigo Women in Agriculture Cooperative Society, at least 1,000 women have a stable network to supply to, free transport and proper prices for their produce.

Nellie Bola, chairlady of RWIA said most women had been subjected to harassment in public market places, most times, not making enough.

“This is a one of a kind service for us where women are earning from their doorstop. This partnership has boosted the women’s morale to expand on agriculture activities. It has lifted a big burden off their shoulders,” Bola said.

The cooperative, she says, covers five electorates through the district where women are to supply garden produce like cooking banana, cherry tomatoes, corn, aibika and other seasonal food every Tuesday since 2012.

A refrigerator truck travels to the area and buys direct from the Cooperative Society members, produce for resale in CPL’s Stop N Shop Supermarkets. 

“We encourage women to specialise in the produce they grow to provide the best quality and supply consistently.

“We’ve come this far – it’s been a very challenging journey but we thank all those who’ve helped us through,” she added.

But there are challenges that still remain such as the need for full irrigation systems, new nursery and equipment’s that fully complement their new training facility.

Gloria Bauai