Savings Groups Change Lives

Savings clubs pool their money in a pot or bowl and loan it all back out after collecting payments with interest from borrowers
Savings clubs pool their money in a pot or bowl and loan it all back out after collecting payments with interest from borrowers
It's simple. Self-selected members agree to form a savings group and decide how often to meet (most often weekly or monthly). They agree on by-laws, a savings amount plus loan terms and interest rates. Each member contributes the agreed amount into the savings pot. One or more members borrow from the pooled savings and it is usually repaid at the next meeting, with interest. Loan interest and the regular savings contributions accumulate with each meeting until most or all members are borrowing each month. Groups agree on the length of their club's operating cycle. At the end, the accumulated amount is divided equally among the group members. Groups are free to wait before starting again, to add more members, to change members or to dissolve the group completely.

Savings club members make contributions and repay loans each member checks the bookkeeping for accuracy
Savings club members make contributions and repay loans   each member checks the bookkeeping for accuracy
Beautiful handicrafts are made to sell and bring handsome profits
Beautiful handicrafts are made to sell and bring handsome profits

Increased income is only part of the story - especially for women in rural Africa. For the first time, women previously dependent on a polygamous husband to provide absolutely everything, now has her own money. This gives her decision-making power in the home. Elevated status within the family. The power to make decisions, even the smallest one, is huge!