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Mathabo Kunene has dedicated her live to empowering and connecting black communities. Wife of the late Professor Mazisi Kunene, a world renowned writer/author and activist who is known for writing in his home language of IsiZulu as well as his critical role in the liberation of South Africa. The importance of removing the colonial way of thinking and embracing African culture has been always formed an essential thread to their bond; to understand who we are, and constantly believe in ourselves as descendants of the great civilizations of Africa.


After Professor Kunene's passing, Mrs. Kunene has continued their joint mission with determination and vigor. Mrs. Kunene understands the essential role, especially women have, in being the keepers of Black culture and heritage.


Breaking down Mrs Kunene’s presentation we grasp what it truly means to decolonize the minds, to truly liberate oneself from western constructs. She says that the responsibility and the power is in our hands. Mrs Mathabo Kunene insists that we need to be fearless and unapologetic because our elders struggled so that we can hold on to our Identity. It’s appalling to watch the continued distorted portrayal of African people. It’s hard to believe that this far in the future, in the year 2021 we are still facing the same exploitation, racism and neglect our ancestors fought against for hundreds of years. The systems, institutions and lopsided value-chains built against black people globally still remain. A little above 15% of the entire human population is of full sub Saharan African descent, yet we are taught very little to nothing of our sub Saharan roots. The decay of African cultural values has gone so deep that it is beginning to consume us from the inside out. We have been disconnected from our own beliefs and identity, forced to adopt those of our colonizers. We support western brands, and find no value in our own...discrediting black owned brands. Our communities are dependent on government aid, when we could be living off the land. These are the habits we aim to destroy through decolonizing the mind and“Smashing that begging bowl”, to quote Mrs Kunene.




Throughout Mrs Kunene’s passionate presentation we heard about the women in the coffee fields breaking their backs in Angola, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Rwanda and across Africa. Women are of course the backbone of the global coffee production, making up almost half of the agricultural workforce. Mrs. Kunene laid out out how we must take back our communities even if its one stitch at a time, as with the women she empowered to start making school uniforms in KwaZulu South Africa. She emphasized how women are in the best position to organize and collaborate to bring change, especially when they fully understand their own strength and value. I do encourage you watch this very stimulating presentation for yourself, just click here. I look forward to your comments.


That's how we wrap up the month of March. Stay tuned for April's web event and follow us on Instagram @royal_women_in_coffee, let's stay connected sis.

Royal Women in Coffee; Join us for the coffee, culture and collaborations.



SOURCES

Hammond Darling Linda. " Unequal Opportunity: Race and Education." BROOKINGS, March 1, 1998


Walker Vanessa and Archung. N. Kim. "The Segregated Schooling of Blacks in the Southern United States and South Africa" Comparative Education review vol.47.no1, February, 2003


Palmer Colin. "DEFINING AND STUDYING THE MODERN AFRICAN DIASPORA." Perspectives On History, September 1, 1998


Brones Anna. "The Future of Coffee Farming Is Female." Sprudge Newsletter, Marcch 26,2019




This weekends event strengthened our resolve, expanded our knowledge and we are more determined than ever to Unite our Global Nation. Listening to sister Jennifer White speak about the spending habits of the Black community globally, we find that as a collective we spend trillions every year on brands and businesses that don't recognize our struggles, or have any intention to invest in the betterment of our global community. Jennifer explained that as a collective we have remarkable spending power and if we come together and harness those funds we can begin the journey to creating our own value chains and institutions. She called it the 25% GAIN PLAN. A call to action for the Black Community globally to replace 25% of their everyday essential products/services with Black owned products/ services.



Jennifer also spoke about how as the Black community, especially in the USA, have the ability to start trends and influence; fashion, culture and lifestyle choices. But she called for a shift in the way we think. We need to rediscover our identity as a global nation, "We are the only people that are found in all parts of the world", we are descendants of great advanced Ancient African civilisations. We must rediscover the long lost love and knowledge of Black Culture and Black People, we must acknowledge our true value and the massive sacrifices that we as a nation have made to the rise of Civilization.


Further she delved into the structure of the Colonial Value Chain; Africa as the producer of raw materials/ raw goods purchased at pennies and African Americans as the consumers on the other side of the value chain. With companies making massive profits ,while not investing into the communities and in many cases perpetuating and reinforcing racist practices.

Unfortunately this is the reality of the coffee value chain; Africans are the farmers of the bean, while processing, packaging, certification, shipping and distribution is done by the West- sharing little to nothing of their profits with the farming communities. Continuing the vicious cycle of exploitation and poverty strategically put in place to drain Africa's resources. I encourage you all to hear first hand, click to watch the full presentation. Next week we will be unpacking Mrs Kunene's presentation on Decolonizing The Mind, so stayed tunned.

Follow us on Instagram @royal_women_in_coffee.




SOURCES


Moss Brandon. "Africa's coffee farmers losing billions to exploitation." AGRIFOCUS African Market, July 29, 2020


Suwandi Intan. "Value Chains: The New Economic Imperialism ." MONTHLY REVIEW

AN INDEPENDENT SOCIALIST MAGAZINE, August 2019


Nyamumbo Margarete. "Kahawa 1893's Margaret Nyamumbo on disrupting fair trade in the global coffee industry." African Tech Roundup, March 2019





Saturday March 13th 8am(Los Angeles) / 11am(New York) /6pm(Johannesburg)

Join us on Zoom







ITS TIME TO COLLABORATE!!!


From South Africa to South Los Angeles people are reshaping the social contract. As African Women we have a unique and powerful network across the value chain with which we can create and strengthen our ownership.

Colonization was a system that took global alliances and cooperation to establish and maintain. De-colonizing our minds and achieving liberation will require that we collaborate to unlock the hurdles and social constructs that play opposition to true liberation and complete sustainability of African decedents globally. As African women in business we understand that creating solid networks is crucial. We are keen to invite you to Women in Coffee.


Jennifer White is all about Strengthening the bridges between Africa and her Global Children. She has over a decade of curating travel experiences across Africa for investment groups, cultural exchanges, and all types of people and businesses expanding to the diverse countries across the continent. With a focus on empowering Black Women, she founded SisterCircle . Through SisterCircle bloomed Roots and Vine Trading Company -developing trade agreements to initiate increased commerce between California Black businesses and Black South African businesses. Jennifer White brings a first-hand knowledge of what it is like to do business in Africa and how to build successful collaborations.



Mathabo Kunene, business woman featured in the Mail and Guardian Powerful Women 2020. Actively involved in the anti-apartheid movement in the United Kingdom as well as Los Angeles and established community organizations, protests and sit-ins. She even testified before congress about predatory housing practices that targeted African American Communities. Mrs Kunene has taken part in multiple business ventures such as a culinary services company that grew to service high profile clients as the late Pop Icon Michael Jackson to anti- apartheid President Nelson Mandela. On her return to South Africa in 1993, she expanded her business engagements opening multiple multi-million dollar women’s investment firms. But closest to her heart is empowering women ,young black people and creating sustainable black communities.


Alone we have managed to achieve amazing things, but imagine if we were a united front of Black communities globally…To truly experience liberation, we must build Industries and Cooperation, build an economy of our own and have black representatives looking out for Black people’s interests in every corner of the globe. This is why the first conversation will center around de-colonizing our minds (dismantling the illusion), and how that translates to; business, culture, spirituality, Identity, ownership and education. Royal Women in Coffee’s main goal is to create a Black network without borders or boundaries, this is the beginning of many moments to come. Moments that we believe will drive us into a sustainable future and preserve our global nation - we need to push forward, because we can not depend on anyone but ourselves.


I speak from the perspective of a young African black woman when I say, I can’t stress how rare and essential these exchanges are especially within our communities. We need representation, we need real role models, real people who are truly for the empowerment of Black people. The time for seeking inclusion is over, it’s the time to make our own spaces.

Join us to not only hear from these amazing Black Women, but also to engage in discussions and collaborate with them and each other to Strengthen your networks.


click on the link https://bit.ly/3rtGMUT to join the conversation on Zoom.

Saturday March 13th 8am(Los Angeles) / 11am(New York) /6pm(Johannesburg)

Sources:

Write Jackie. "Wright Enterprises Posts SisterCircle's South African Call to Invest in Africa with 2019 Wine Tour." MENAFN, April 21, 2019

Moosa Fatima.''The Business Woman.'' Mail and Guardian Powerful Women, 2020


Stewart Y. Joceyln and Levin Myron. "South African Family finds nightmare in American Dream': Loan :Wife of exiled couple says Michael Henschel swindled them out of their house, but he denies any misdeeds.'' Los Angeles Times, May 28, 1995


Rajab Devi.'' Warrior for other women.'' The Mercury, August 1, 2017