Sina Gerard is Rwanda’s self-proclaimed “greatest businessman.” The guy is not joking. Starting with beignets, he now makes and sells everything from chili oil to banana wine. Located about an hour and a half north of Kigali, Sina Gerard has built his own miniature empire. Factories that produce his goods, markets to sell them in, and workers who worship his entrepreneurial skills are all located in the small village with a Truman Show-esq feel. Sina even built his own museum to showcase his life’s accomplishments. He’s slowly becoming a Rwandan legend.
All jokes aside, despite the lengthiness of our day (and the many laughs shared at his expense that undoubtedly made CAP Rwanda 2015 a closer pack) Sina’s accomplishments were pretty remarkable. What was most striking was the school he built for the community’s children. It was probably the most beautiful school we’ve seen in Rwanda, and the students and faculty greeted us with open arms. His lavishness and over the top personality aside, Sina is a social entrepreneur. I couldn’t help but think about Aime as we toured Sina-land, who shares the similar ambition to give back to his community.
Our group was also able to visit Swoarthe Tea Factory today, a stunning tea plantation close to Sina Gerard’s village. The plantation dwarfed Aime’s small coffee washing station, however, we were able to gain insights on how to build a successful tour that includes the crop to cup experience. Looking forward to sharing our insights with Aime!