NEW YORK (WLNY) — When people mention Rwanda, many think of the violence and struggle from the nineties, and the genocide.
But Grace Hightower DeNiro joined The Couch to let us know that the country is so much more than that — and how we can do our part to help — it’s as easy as pouring yourself a cup of coffee.
The actress and singer, who is married to Robert DeNiro, created Grace Hightower coffees in an effort to help promote women’s causes and help to grow the economy in Rwanda.
As she explains, the country has come a long way.
“It has progressively moved forward so quickly, which is why I really became interested in Rwanda itself, because women have played an incredible role in helping the country to progress,” she said.
One night, Hightower DeNiro heard Rwandan President Paul Kagame speak at a small dinner. He said the country needed trade — not aid.
DeNiro found out that coffee is one of the country’s main resources.
“Coffee really is a real cash flow for Rwandan people, and it really does help the economy. But it helps the family directly. The majority of families there are farmers, and they have small coffee farmers, so we deal directly with the farmers, so there’s no middle man. The coffee is a great source for education, health, community…for their livelihood.”
You can purchase the coffee from Whole Foods, Brooklyn Fare, Union Market and several other outlets in New York.