Murangwa Reverien, a 49-year-old married man, lives with his wife and six children in Gisiza, located in the region of Southern Province of Rwanda. Before his family enrolled in the FXBVillage program, they lived in poverty. Murangwa and his wife could not provide for their family’s basic needs, and they saw no way out of their difficulties.
“My life was characterized by comprehensive scarcity. My family sometimes went days without food. Some of my children didn’t go to school despite the free education for all, because I couldn’t afford to buy stationery for them,” said Murangwa, “Every time one of my family members got sick, we had to resort to local traditional herbal medicine, because I couldn’t afford to pay health assurance and hospital bills.” Unfortunately, his family’s poor living conditions made them more prone to illness. “Every time someone came to our house, the smell of cooking smoke coupled with cow waste would simply push him out of the door,” said Murangwa.
In November 2014, Murangwa’s family enrolled in the Gisiza FXBVillage program, and their life started to change. At the very beginning of the program, FXBVillage’s comprehensive support package provided them with food supplement for nine month, school supplies and healthcare to meet their immediate needs. Later, Murangwa and his wife also received support for starting their own income generating activities.
“I received $150 from FXB as the startup capital after a series of training sessions on how to start and run a small business. My wife and I decided to use the money to grow vegetables for sale. Because I am also a member of a saving-lending group, I got a loan that I used as capital for selling goats. We don’t know much, but we do know how to farm since childhood,” said Murangwa, “The goat business turned out to be very lucrative coupled with vegetable farming.”
At the end of the second year of the FXBVillage program, Murangwa and his wife’s business was doing very well and generated steady income for the family. By the end of 2016, Murangwa’s family had 115,000 RWF (about $140) in their local saving group account. He also renovated his house, installed electricity and connected his home to safe tap water.
“FXB has helped me rebuild my life and my family. Every time I look at my life, I can hardly believe that it is me who own a house with electricity and that all my children go to school. I can’t find enough words to thank FXB,” said Murangwa.