The communities we partner with are often considered unbankable. Without assets or a credit history, getting a loan is virtually impossible. This means that even the smallest development shock has the potential to dramatically impact a family’s life and make them unable to pay for school tuition, malaria treatment, or cover meals during the lean season while crops are still growing. A loan as small as $5 can be the catalyst that keeps family life from grinding to a halt, and can even generate growth.
All Raising The Village projects involve a Village Savings and Loan Association (VSLA). Each month participating households contribute a small amount (this can be as little as $0.10) to an operational fund that helps ensure all projects are able to succeed. This can include covering the cost of repairs at the water spring if a pipe bursts, or replacing a flat tire on the motorbike ambulance.
Watch The Impact of VSLA in Action
Access to small loans can catapult a family into a thriving and sustainable future.
“Since Raising The Village brought us together as youth through the VSLA, it has motivated us again. The VSLA has become ours. We are making our own goals. From the knowledge we’re getting out of the trainings, we are able to see more for ourselves”
– Samuel, Rukungwe Village
A Strong Financial Future
Once the project’s minimum balance is met by contributions, additional funds are available for loan to VSLA members. Typically the loans vary from $2 to $15 at a time and are repaid in less than 3 months. By mid 2020, 89% of Raising The Village partner households accessed a personal loan, compared to only 9% in 2016.
Oftentimes VSLAs set goals to not only serve as a support resource, but build up their own savings with groups looking to pool funds for large investments. This helps ensure that implemented projects are sustainable, and provides a strong financial foundation to move the community forward.