iDE Global
Catherine Web Hover


Farm Business Owner

Catherine Sangwa, a 29-year-old mother of four, took a bold step by growing sunflowers instead of the usual maize. Inspired by an iDE-supported nutrition program, she recognized the benefits of sunflower oil for her children's health and the potential financial opportunities. Catherine also used the sunflower byproduct cake to feed her chickens and pigs.

Having attended cooking demonstrations facilitated by iDE, Catherine embraces nutritious ingredients like pumpkin, sweet potato, and groundnuts when feeding her family. She also insists on good hygiene, having learned that handwashing before eating can prevent diseases that can lead to malnutrition.

Using the profits from her oil sales, Catherine generously supports other local women entrepreneurs by providing them with loans at a fair interest rate. Her efforts inspire positive change, not just for her family, but for her entire community.

What's next for Catherine

“In five years’ time, I see myself expanding my agro-business by opening two or three big shops in one of the big cities in Zambia, either in Lusaka or Kabwe where I will be supplying various agricultural inputs at a large scale. In addition, I plan on establishing formal linkages with international input suppliers of chemicals so that I can become a distributor of agro-chemicals. Lastly, I would like to buy a bigger solar powered irrigation system and a tractor in order to expand my farm business.”

Crushed groundnuts are added to pumpkin in a cooking demonstration to show young mothers how to prepare nutritious food.

Catherine's Details

  • Zambia
  • Agriculture
Entrepreneur Impact
  • Access to finance
  • Motivating Investment
  • Local Distribution & Sales
  • Production
  • Supporting Services
Ecosystem Impact
  • Food & Nutrition Security
  • Local Economic Development

Country Profile

  • 146/189

    Human Development Index (HDI) Rank

  • 59%

    Poverty Rate

  • 19 Million People


iDE was started as a radical idea that business is a solution to move people out of poverty. 40 years later, we still don't give things away. We create long term change by powering entrepreneurs to end poverty for their families and communities.

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