Charleston September 2009

Name: Alicia Charleston
Post: Natitingou

Brief Project Description:

The millet beer brewing collective of Natitingou is comprised of 100 women. The executive board members of the group (five in total) and twenty other members will be working together as part of a village savings and loans group in order to save money on a weekly basis. Once the women successfully save money and complete accurate recordings of the transactions, they will be able to start taking out loans in order to improve their businesses.
The group will learn how to budget and save money through out the course of the year. They will develop useful skills for their personal lives and business and will be able to pass those skills on to other businesswomen.

Dates of Project: Village Savings and Loans group will begin October 2009 and will continue for 12 months.
Number of People Involved: 25 Women, ages 25 ā€“ 45. The women are members of the millet beer brewing collective of Natitingou.

Item Number Cost
Tin box 1 5.000 CFA
Notebook 25 4.000 CFA
Stamp and ink pad 1 2.000 CFA
Lock and key 3 3.000 CFA
Bowl 2 200 CFA
Total Cost 14.200 CFA

Amount Requested: CFA


GAD Coordinator: Sounds like a great project. I like that Alicia is working with a pre-existing group of women. Iā€™m curious about how the 20 members were chosen/or volunteered to participate, if the collective includes 100 women. Recommend funding.
GAD Finance: All of the VSL group projects sound fantastic. How often will Alicia meet with the group? Recommend funding.
GAD Specialist: Recommend funding

Closing Report

Brief Project Description:

Village Savings and Loan group (Microfinance) has been started with 30 women from the Association of Tchouk Brewing Women of Natitingou. Five women per quarter, across six quartiers, were selected to participate. The group meets Saturday mornings to drop of their weekly savings. After 12 weeks of saving money, the group plans to start offering loans to members who would like to grow their business.

Dates of Project: October 2009 ā€“ June 2010
Number of People Involved: 30 Women, ages 20 - 50

Goals of Project:

The goals/objectives of the Village Savings and Loans group is to teach women the importance of saving money. As a result of the group, they will be able to take out loans to grow their business. Throughout the process of saving money, the women will continue to learn and practice basic business skills, such as: accounting, personal finance, budgeting.

The first step of the project was to organize a group of motivated women to form the group. They have already learned the basic ideas behind the Village Savings and Loan group and understand how the program will continue to run. The rest of the goals will continue to be worked on throughout the following year.

Strengths of Project: The project gives a group of women the chance to take out loans to grow their business in a way that was previously not possible. All of the women in the group have apprentices that will also learn the skills and be able to keep the project sustainable.
Challenges of Project: The first challenge was finding 20-30 Tchouk brewing women interested and motivated at starting the group. The second challenge was finding a meeting time and place where all women can participate.


Item Number Cost
Notebooks 6 300 CFA
Photocopies for account books 35 2.400 CFA
Stamp pad 1 1.000 CFA
Padlocks 3 2.250 CFA
Lock box for money 1 12.000 CFA
Total Cost 17.950 CFA
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