When launching HOPE Tanzania last year, Peter Greer, HOPE’s president and CEO, emphasized, “The reason behind every expansion at HOPE is to invest in the dreams of even more families.”
One year later, we’re praising God for opening the doors to do just that. Check out these stories of how savings groups are already impacting Tanzanian families and communities—there’s so much to celebrate!
In February, Esther Thomas joined a savings group through her church. With a loan of 29,000 shillings (about $12 U.S.), Esther launched a business selling charcoal stoves, food, and kitchen utensils in her community. She reports that profits from the business enabled her and her husband to pay for school uniforms and supplies for their four school-aged children, as well as food for the entire family of eight.
Neema Alfonsi says she and her husband used to struggle just to put food on the table for themselves and their 1-year-old son. When she heard about savings groups at church in February, she decided to join and began asking God what she could do to provide for her family. Two months later, she took a loan from her group to start a business selling cooking oil, used clothing, and other household items. Today, she shares that her family has food and clothing, and she even purchased a bicycle so she can travel to sell her goods at other markets.
The Injili (“evangelism”) savings group
In the country’s Kwimba District, community savings groups have a reputation for charging members high rates on loans. But the Injili (“evangelism”) savings group, which formed in February through a local church that partners with HOPE, is modeling an alternative. Following HOPE’s savings group training, the Injili group chooses its own policies and rates. Its 26 members gather not only to save money and offer loans at reasonable rates, but also to pray and worship God together. Since the beginning, several members have used loans to open new businesses, and members say they now have savings to cover emergencies and other unexpected expenses. The group also wants to share their blessings: Their first goal is to pay for new curtains for their church.
These experiences from Esther, Neema, and the Injili savings group illustrate the encouraging progress and impact we’ve seen over the last year. Thank you for supporting our team’s efforts in Tanzania through your prayers and generosity!
More big-picture highlights:
- 52 churches equipped to serve their communities by forming and training savings groups
- 59 savings groups launched by our church partners in their communities
- 1,128 savings group members meeting to study Scripture, pray, and save with their neighbors
We celebrate God’s work, and we’re grateful to have you on mission with us! If you’d like to come alongside more families in Tanzania and across the HOPE network, you can donate directly to Tanzania here and all giving with be matched up to $75,000 USD (with up to a $7,500 match per donation) through December 20th, 2023.
Learn more about the spiritual, social, material, and personal impact we hope to see through our savings group model here. To support the continued growth of savings groups in Tanzania and beyond, sign up for our monthly prayer update to receive the latest prayer requests and praise reports from across our network.