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A group created to save and loan money does so much more

POSTED April 26, 2018

A group created to save and loan money does so much more

Women are securing emotional and financial support to make a difference in their homes and communities

By Patrice Zongo, communications manager, Burkina Faso

Viviane

Women comprise 52 percent of the population in Burkina Faso, according to state statistics. In rural areas, they are essential to sustaining their family and household. Yet, they face challenges accessing micro-credit for income-generating activities that fight poverty.

That’s why Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC), with its partners, introduced the Village Savings and Loans Associations (VSLA) to empower women (Click here to watch a video explaining how VSLAs works). Thanks to support from donors, we have been strengthening vulnerable women and building strong communities.

Viviane, a mother-of-three and a village hairdresser, is a testament of the changes. A leader within her community, she has used money from the program to buy equipment for her business and now oversees 40 VSLA groups.

Two years after introducing the initiative in the community, more than 900 women organized more than 40 groups in a community with a population of approximately 1,700. They saved and shared $115,000, and just last week they ended another nine-month cycle, raising $48,000.

But, the VSLA provides so much more than money. “The approach promotes solidarity among women, and that benefits the whole community,” explains Viviane (pictured). “Before we discovered VSLA, [gathering] women for an initiative was a real challenge. Today, things are different. VSLA created cohesion and strengthened our social interactions. We know one another better and support each other.”

It’s all thanks to our generous supporters’ commitment to creating brighter futures for children, their families and entire communities. Learn more about how you can help, today.

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ABOUT CHILDREN BELIEVE (formerly Christian Children's Fund of Canada):

Children Believe works globally to empower children to dream fearlessly, stand up for what they believe in — and be heard. For 60 years, we’ve brought together brave young dreamers, caring supporters and partners, and unabashed idealists. Together, we’re driven by a common belief: creating access to education — inside and outside of classrooms — is the most powerful tool children can use to change their world.