francesca ward

Rockflower Invests in Women’s Collective of Astillero

Rockflower Invests in Women’s Collective of Astillero

In partnership with Casa Congo, a social enterprise based in Astillero, Nicaragua, an investment has been made  for the second time into the Women's Collective of Astillero. The founding members of the Collective, The Tejedoras are a group of local women in Astillero who started an up cycling business over 11 years ago.

Rockflower Launches Campaign to Expand Women Owned Business in Nicaragua


In the summer of 2017 Rockflower partnered with Casa Congo, a fast growing international conservation movement with a social enterprise and based in Astillero, Nicaragua, to provide funds and expertise to expand The Women's Collective at El Astillero. Las Tejedoras or "The Weavers", a group of women established in 2007, are the founding members of this Collective and have proven their skill and ingenuity in creating a business that to date has recycled over 400,000 plastic bags discarded on the streets and beaches of Astillero to create beautiful bags, hats, wallets, and other products. Their slogan, “Una Bolsa Más, Una Tortuga Menos” translates to “One More Bag, One Less Turtle.”

Casa Congo has a vision to empower the local community through environmental and cultural conservation, through the four pillars of Ecology, Ocean Advocacy, Built Environments and Place Making.

The Rockflower/Casa Congo partnership will act as a gardener to facilitate the growth of The Women's Collective through the provision of access to credit and micro loans, educational workshops and collaborative endeavors. In order to learn, gain confidence and expertise, and increase their potential for economic empowerment, the women need support' not only through investment, but in developing business and marketing models to maximize their amazing entrepreneurial spirit. 

This campaign is raising funds to build upon an earlier investment in The Tejedoras Juice and Smoothie Bar, an idea which this determined and inspired group of women brought to life in December of 2017.  

Now they are ready to take their vision to the next level. The expansion will consist of:

  • Bicycle powered juice blenders ("Blender Bikes")

  • Solar Panel System

  • Expanded venue size and outdoor seating area

  • Refrigeration, water filtration, and composting systems

  • Cash register

Support the Women’s Collective of El Astillero by visiting our campaign page.

This fundraiser is being led by Rockflower Youth Advisor and Casa Congo team member Francesca Ward and assisted by Casa Congo volunteers Cobo Alvarez de Toledo, Hannah Rikeman and Bianca Acland. 

Investing in Economic Opportunities for Deserted Women in India Shows Positive Results

In February of this year, Rockflower funded a pilot project to support the economic empowerment of deserted women living in coastal villages in India's southern state of Tamil Nadu. The fundraising campaign was part of Rockflower's partnership with the Society for Participatory Research and Integrated Training (SPRIT), which focuses on creating sustainable economic development for female headed families after the loss of a spouse or desertion.

Rockflower Youth Advisors Francesca Ward and Connor West Complete Fundraiser for Single Women Headed Families in Tamil Nadu, India

Rockflower Youth Advisors Francesca Ward and Connor West Complete Fundraiser for Single Women Headed Families in Tamil Nadu, India

Building on the crowdfunding initiative by the Rockflower Youth Advisory Board to promote and integrate themselves into the principles and funding potential of all Rockflower partners and projects, Youth Advisors Francesca Ward and Connor West have successfully completed a fundraiser for the Coastal Villages Project in Tamil Nadu, India. 

Rockflower Launches Fundraiser to Empower Single Women Who Head Families in India

Rockflower launched a fundraiser to empower single women who head families in India. The fundraiser is part of Rockflower's "Sustainable Economic Development of Single Women Headed Families" partnership with The Society for Participatory Research and Integrated Training (SPRIT) in Tamil Nadu, India.