Beatrice is 33 years old. She is married with four children aged between one and seven. This is a new loan product for UOB. This loan will help in the construction of the warehouse or store for their maize crop while they are waiting for their harvest to be bought by the buyers. This constructed infrastructure will help the entire community by providing a secure store of their crops in the future. UOB’s farmers clients are benefiting from the production financing which is increasing significantly their yield or production. However, during the post-harvest process many are suffering poorness as they have to wait for the buyers to pay them. This Kiva Loan will play a big role as a bridge for solving their primary day to day needs during the period.
The agriculture sector accounts for 37% of Rwanda's gross domestic product, generates 65% of Rwanda's export revenue, and employs approximately 90% of Rwandans (as of 2009). Despite the importance of agriculture to Rwandans and their economy, financial institutions view lending to fund agricultural activities as a high-risk proposition because the profitability of these activities is affected by weather, natural disasters, and price fluctuations. For this reason, farmers in Rwanda remain under served by financial institutions. Urwego Opportunity Bank is expanding into this market and is happy to provide Kiva lenders with the opportunity to support Rwandan farmers.
More information about this loan
This loan is part of Urwego Opportunity Bank's program targeting farmers who are members of cooperatives. All borrowers benefiting from these loans receive financing, as well as seed and fertilizer from the Rwandan government. This Kiva loan will thus be used to provide borrowers with needed goods or services, as opposed to cash or financial credit. The loan is also covered by insurance in case of crop failure.
Without flexible, risk-tolerant capital provided by lenders like you, Urwego Opportunity Bank would not be able to offer this type of loan. This is critical in Rwanda where 85% of the population is employed in agriculture, but many formal financial institutions consider the sector to be too risky to invest. By funding this loan, you are expanding opportunity to farmers with limited options.
About Urwego Opportunity Bank of Rwanda (UOB)
Urwego is a Rwandan bank specializing in microfinance. It offers credit products to individuals and groups interested in starting or expanding their businesses. It also offers training in business development, financial literacy and health management. Given that approximately 90% of the Rwandan population is directly or indirectly related to the agricultural sector, Kiva lenders’ funds will be used to support UOB’s agricultural loan products, which are vital to the clients living in remote areas.