In June 2016, USAID Twiyubake through Francois-Xavier Bagnoud Rwanda (FXB) established the Duterimbere youth saving group located in Kanyabaranzi village, Nyagahinga cell, Cyanika sector, Burera district. The program trained the youth saving group, composed of 29 members, on financial education and work readiness.

After one year of saving, the members managed to share out Rwf 2 020 619 Rwf and received a match of 1 147 500 Rwf from the program on their savings. The saving group members invested in individual income generating activities ranging from small animal husbandry, investments in transport, small business enterprises and education.

Pierre, the president of the youth saving group, is satisfied with the group and his own achievements. The youth saving group allowed him to become a university student in law. When he entered into the saving group, he used to sell potatoes at the local market. With the loans he borrowed from the saving group, he invested in a small livestock business und continued with his potato trade. “Although I really love business, I also enrolled into law at university. I also volunteered to be a USAID Twiyubake community based volunteer for Early Childhood Development. In this role, I mobilized parents to bring their children to the program’s ECD centers and supervise 2 ECDs. It is an additional experience which increases my networks and knowledge”, he explained. Josiane is Pierre’s sister and member of the saving group. She was able to take tailoring lessons for three months for which she paid 30, 000 Rwf. After the share out in the saving group, she bought a sewing machine for 80,000 Rwf and started working in a tailoring shop together with two other members of the saving group. The shop is led by an experienced women who mentor them in their daily work. Now, Marceline is earning 50,000 Rwf a month.

Bosco used to carry merchandises at the market. After one year, he bought a bicycle on which he transports his own merchandises which he sold at the market. He is now saving for a motorbike. Paul was an owner of a bicycle and purchased a motorbike for 400 000 Rwf. His next target is to save for a car and driving license.

Three saving group members started a fruitful business. Gloriose, a young mother, who used to cultivate on two small fields harvested recently 500 tons of potato. Thanks to the saving group, she started renting a two hectare land plot, the yield from the potatoes allowed her to buy four shares each week. She then took another loan of 200,000 Rwf and borrowed four hectares land. Her target is to increase her yield to 100 tons of potatoes per season.

Patrick and his wife are both members of the youth saving group. “Before I used to sell potato seeds of a value of 300 000 Rwf at the market at Nyagahinga. In the youth saving group, I took a loan of 200 000 Rwf, and added 500 000 Rwf, which I got from my potato seed business. I left the table at the market and opened a shop. Throughout the year we took small loans to diversify our business. At the share out, we received a total of 245 000 Rwf. Now, we run a potato business of a value of 800 000 Rwf, a shop of a value of 400 000 Rwf and sell mobile money of a value of 500 000 Rwf. We both provide 5 shares each week and our target is to increase our capital to 2 million for the store, 1 million for the shop and 1 million for the mobile money”, concluded Patrick.

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