A machine that creates time

It is a nice morning in Bissau. Driving through vast terrain of cashew plantations, we are heading to Barambe, a village that is situated in about 2 hours drive from the capital. On the shores of the atlantic ocean, this village is a nice and distant place to spend a day in.

Rice is the main food here. As it needs to be peeled before being consumed, the only traditional method to do so here is using a mortar, which is a women’s job culturally. It looks fun when you are watching a woman doing it, but when holding the pestle, it is indeed very tiring and time consuming.


Afectos Com Letras, funded by the Australian Aid, came up with a solution to the village. The organization offered a fully functional rice peeling machine, and by paying a very little amount of money, they get their rice peeled in a few minutes, work that normally took not less than an hour. The machine is property of the village, and one part of the fees paid for peeling is used for taking care of the machine, and the other part is kept as savings for the village.

1. Rice is brought
2. Put in the machine
3. Rice is out and ready. Easy.

“With the machine here, I now have time to do other things for my house, such as gardening”- Inacia says . Indeed, after realizing that they have more time for themselves, women here have come up with an idea of starting a collective vegetable garden to improve on their diet.

Inacia, one of the beneficiaries
Time to test the efficacy of the machine 🙂


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