USAID Cooperative Resilience and Equity Activity (CORE)

Fostering vibrant, sustainable cooperative ecosystems in Rwanda and Zambia.
2023 – 2028

The USAID Cooperative Resilience and Equity Activity (CORE) is working with cooperatives and other agricultural stakeholders in Zambia and Rwanda to foster vibrant, sustainable cooperative ecosystems. Across both countries, CORE will support over 160 dairy, horticulture, and oilseed cooperatives and 12,000 members in partnership with local market actors, which will result in an estimated 30 percent increase in cooperative sales. CORE takes a localized and market-responsive approach: engaging market actors, including women and youth, to tailor activities to their unique needs, while sustainably strengthening their capacity.

CORE is funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development's Cooperative Development Program (CDP). Venture37 is an implementer of USAID's global CDP, which strengthens cooperatives and credit unions globally to improve the social, economic, and environmental conditions of local communities. 


1. Bolstering Cooperative Management

Through coaching and training sessions, CORE is inclusively strengthening cooperatives’ institutional capacities and their ability to respond and adapt to challenges and opportunities, with a focus on gender and youth-inclusive programming.

2. Facilitating Agricultural Market Linkages

The success of cooperatives depends on reliable access to quality goods and services. With this in mind, we are leveraging market systems approaches to increase the quality and quantity of services to cooperatives from public and private sector entities.

3. Spurring Innovation & Research

With the knowledge we’ve leveraged from over 32 years of implementing cooperative development programs, we’re spurring innovation and research on cooperative development throughout the global development community.


Rwanda + Zambia

Agriculture plays a crucial role in both Rwanda and Zambia’s economies, with around 62 percent and 58 percent of their populations employed in the sector, respectively. Cooperatives play an equally critical role: They often underpin the ability of smallholder farmers — who may otherwise be operating independently — to scale up their businesses.