College of the Atlantic students Taibatou Adamou '22, left, and Aniruddha Jaydeokar '23 are 2022 ... College of the Atlantic students Taibatou Adamou ’22, left, and Aniruddha Jaydeokar ’23 are 2022 Katharine Davis Projects for Peace award winners.

Utilizing the $10,000 award, the pair will implement the project abroad over the summer.

The group that Adamou and Jaydeokar will be working with are the Fara’a women (this translates to “Joy” in English). The Fara’a are 10 female entrepreneurs who came together to combat issues farmers and their families face in Niger, including poverty, food insecurity, low housing quality, and an inability to access affordable doctors and education.

The Fara’a have been working with their local farmers to make marketable foods and beverages, so that the community makes more wide-scale income. Lately the demand for their products has begun to rise, and as a result the Fara’a need help to make their small business thrive, meet the changing market, and be eco-conscious.

“With the right tools and knowledge, they can build the legacy of a successful enterprise that will change lives,” Adamou says in the project plans. Jaydeokar is passionate about serving others and is “motivated to support the Fara’a women develop and expand their enterprise within Niger and Beyond,” he says.

Adamou and Jaydeokar are working to bring more sustainable business practices to the Fara’a women, to help them gain visibility as successful and sustainable small business owners. They aim to supply the Fara’a with the skills necessary to grow their business and meet market demands.

This project will directly reduce poverty for approximately 20 families with the potential to uplift many more as the enterprise develops,” plans state. “This will help build a peaceful, strong, sustainable community with the resilience to take on the challenges of the future.”

After participating in these sustainable business workshops, the Fara’a will be in a better financial situation, have the ability to put their children into good educational programs, and be selling certified products with a competitive advantage.

To ensure this project allows the entrepreneurs to learn the necessary skills they will need, Adamou and Jaydeokar have two distinct sections laid out. There will be focus on sustainable business practices, which will be taught through workshops co-designed with mentors.

The mentors that helped to co-design the workshops were COA’s director of sustainable business program, Professor Jay Friedlander; Harvard MBA graduate and co-founder of African Development University in Niamey, Niger, Kader Kaneye; and financial advisors from the Maine Small Business Development Center.

The second part of the project will be brand development and marketing. This means getting the Fara’a products certified with the country of Niger as a safe product, especially their highly sought after loose leaf Kinkeliba tea. The branding will be redeveloped with graphic designer Alsu Shagieva, and made to be in biodegradable packaging.

Credit: Google mapsAdamou is a native to Niamey, Niger, more specifically from the Terminus neighborhood where the Fara’a women are based and so has a direct connection with them particularly with the founder, Ms Mélé Fanata. She knows the culture, speaks Hausa (the native language of the Fara’a women), and understands their struggles, motivating her to support them. Having won The Go Make a Difference Grant in 2017 with her project FAM (Fight Against Malaria) that brought medicine and mosquito nets to her village, Adamou observed that although the donations greatly helped her community, they were short-term solutions.

“In pursuit of sustainable solutions, this project for peace was born,” she writes.

Aniruddha, from India, has been working in startups for the past five years. In 2016, he founded IGCSE Pro (, an online resource for students taking the Cambridge IGCSE examinations. His website helped bring reforms to the overpriced tutoring industry and has served more than 500,000 students worldwide to access high quality educational resources for free. Anirudhha’s upbringing in India allows him to understand the challenges faced by Niger since both countries are fast growing, Global South economies, he says.

Projects for Peace selected 129 projects from 85 partner institutions in 2022. The student leaders of each project receive $10,000 in funds to pursue innovative, community-centered, and scalable responses to the world’s most pressing issues. Most projects will be implemented between June and September.

Refugee services, social division and cohesion, human rights, health and well-being, economic development, and access to equitable education are among the diverse issue areas grantees identified this year as critical to a more peaceful world. Interventions take the form of community-building events, skill-building workshops, information campaigns, art and design activities, innovative uses of technology, and documentary film-making, among others.

Since its founding in 2007, Projects for Peace has funded more than 1950 projects. Projects are nominated by partner colleges and universities, often working from criteria specific to their institution’s priorities. Projects may take place anywhere in the world and may be led by an individual or by a group of students. This summer Projects for Peace will take place in more than 63 countries and 8 different U.S. states.

Projects for Peace was founded by Kathryn W. Davis, who celebrated her 100th birthday by supporting 100 Projects for Peace, designed “to bring about a mind-set of preparing for peace, instead of preparing for war.” In 2022 the administrative headquarters of the program moved from the Davis United World College Scholars Program, which had hosted the program for 15 years, to Middlebury College’s Center for Community Engagement.