At Banunga, our goal is to create innovative solutions to intractable problems while striving to empower those that have historically been neglected. We work to provide opportunities while expanding our business with sustainability at the heart of each endeavor. Ultimately, we will grow our concept based on the same honesty and integrity it was founded on always with those we seek to empower at the center of each decision.
We are a group of graduate and undergraduate students at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina who are pursuing degrees in global health. All of us are currently taking a course on Global Nutrition, where throughout the semester we have been learning about undernutrition, maternal and child nutrition, obesity, food security and global nutrition policies. Additionally, we watched several documentaries on food security, both in the US and abroad. The personal stories of the people in the documentaries combined with lectures and readings have motivated us to seek an innovative way to help address the issue of food insecurity. Our professor informed us about the Thought for Food Challenge, and we felt that it would be the best way to learn more about malnutrition and food insecurity, as well as come up with a solution to a problems that we care deeply about.
Our team is comprised of 5 people with diverse backgrounds and interests. One of our team members is from Uganda and another team member has travelled there. With ties to Uganda, we began to explore ways in which we could address food security within the country. We sought to form a business model which will stimulate Uganda’s economy, while employing and empowering individuals in the local communities. Our goal was to to come up with an idea that will address multiple parts of a very complex issue. Banunga accomplishes this goal by having multiple beneficiaries while addressing the central problem of food insecurity in a nation that has historically struggled with this issue. We sought to create a fair-trade, inclusive product to ensure that the people producing the product also benefit from it.
As the creators of Banunga, we created a sustainable and feasible solution to help alleviate food insecurity while stimulating the economy and improving the livelihoods of many Ugandan farmers. We are peeling back hunger one banana at a time!