Story of change

Dukunde Kawa Kiyonza VSLA

With support from Kahawatu Foundation, Dukunde Kawa Kiyonza Village Savings and Loan Association has helped its members to save, invest, and access funding from a social fund.

Dukunde Kawa Kiyonza Village Savings and Loan Association (VSLA) is located in Nyaruguru District in southern Rwanda. It has 28 members and is in its second saving cycle. The VSLA has a bank account where members can keep their money securely. The price of 1 share for saving is 200 RWF (about US$0.18) in both the first and second saving cycles.
During its first saving cycle, Dukunde Kawa Kiyonza did well in terms of savings, with access to loans at 5% interest for the members. As a group, they decided to invest some of their savings to compound their money and gain more profits beyond what they normally receive from 5% loan interest and penalties.
During the 2022 coffee harvesting season, the members invested US$365 to buy cherry and sell it to Nyampinga Coffee Washing Station. The total return was US$557, so they made a profit of US$192. In June 2022, the peak time for paying health insurance, the VSLA agreed to support 14 members who hadn’t paid health insurance for their household members using US$205 from the profits made and the social fund. The money was returned within 3 months, with no interest, which strengthened group solidarity and social wellbeing. 

“As a VSLA, we have made sure that none of our members will miss out health insurance for their household members. At least 70% of members will be able to invest in income-generating initiatives and the social fund will always be used to support members in difficult times,” said the VSLA president.