Late last month, life in Rwanda was returning to its new form of normal. People were returning to working life and domestic travel, although still impacted by the COVID pandemic. A news article on 29th September 2020 noted that,

“Today, with large parts of the economy open again, more than 10,000 field workers visit homes, villages and towns to conduct contact tracing, submitting daily reports to the government. Coronavirus-prevention guidelines are blared through loudspeakers fitted on drones that hover above congested suburbs in the capital, Kigali.”

(The Wall Street Journal;

Grassroots Rwanda is also returning to life. October saw the recommencement of the women’s Self Help Groups. Not only will we come to a better understanding of how Foxglove women and groups have coped with the COVID pandemic but we will be starting up new clusters in new villages.

During the last quarter of 2020, the Foxglove Grassroots Rwanda project aims to start 10 Self Help Groups for 200 women in 10 villages of between 2000 to 4000 people. The women are identified by the community leaders as the poorest women in the village with a local woman asked to take on the role of the coordinator. She personally invites the women to the community meetings, facilitates the formation of the groups, organises the training (personal and skills training), and supports the groups to meet weekly under a rotational leadership model. Every woman leads and takes up group roles across the year. Within six months the women are ready to commence micro-businesses using the weekly savings the women contribute to a savings pot. Such a remarkable approach!

To date, Foxglove’s Grassroots Rwanda has supported more than 16,000 women to join groups. Our Self-Help Goal goal of 200 groups for 4000 women in 10 new villages is a financial target of $60,000.

I know it is another crazy idea.

In fact, my dream would be 2000 people giving $30 per person. But absolutely no pressure. Foxglove supporters are about far more than funds. We are about dreams and hopes and passion. And we love to think that you want to join us!