Indigenous people of Rwanda were hunter-gatherers for thousands of years. Then they were expelled from the forest to make a home for gorillas. Now gorillas are protected and humans are endangered!
PSA's first challenge was reducing the 50% death rate of children under 5.
Success in that endeavor gave rise to the need for a new school.
Now the challenge is to earn money to feed and care for a growing population.
The man in this video prepares clay to make pots to sell.
Using manure to enrich the soil, the community works together to grow beans and cassava and other vegetables.
Education was the 1st step in the loan program. As a very poor community, they were never before asked to repay anything. They had no grasp of interest. Traditionally people borrowed from relatives, or friends without interest.
The community decided on interest of 1% per month and agreed that loans of 4 months rather than one year would allow everyone to get a loan more quickly.
The community selected a loan officer to receive payments and issue new loans and provided for full transparency. Another person double checks the figures. As a community they discussed business ideas and provided suggestions for improving business models.
Making bamboo sticks to sell to restaurants for shish-ka-bobs.
A welder and a potter, who are a married couple, work together to make charcoal stoves.
Grass-cutting is a successful business. .
This older video provides further background on the origins of PSA
"The developing world is full of entrepreneurs and visionaries who, with access to education, equity and credit would play a key role in developing the economic situation in their countries." Muhammad Yunus
For more info, contact TCPGlobal@peacecorpsconnect.org