Growing Peace

By School Library Journal

After witnessing the September 11 attacks, J.J. Keki—a musician, composer, and coffee farmer—was inspired to create change in his home village of Namanyonyi in Uganda. Keki wanted to foster religious tolerance in his community made up of Christian, Jewish, and Muslim families. His solution was to form a coffee growers’ cooperative and encourage the local farmers, regardless of their faith, to join and work together for better prices and bargaining power. Using the neighborhood children, Keki reached out to their parents, urging them to become part of the co-op. The venture started in 2005 with approximately 250 members. As of 2016, there are more than 1,000 members participating. Half- and full-page captioned color photos liberally illustrate the text, which also describes the process of growing and harvesting the coffee cherries. VERDICT A useful selection for primary social studies curricula interested in foreign agricultural initiatives.

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