What We Do

MicroFinancing the MPA Way

Each of our projects at the core are grassroots microfinancing organizations offer training, support, and a reliable method of saving, borrowing, and growing a business. Through strategic steps with each microfinance project individuals and communities come together to develop and advance business opportunities centered around microfinancing to help lift themselves out of extreme poverty.

Microfinancing looks different for each of our projects – while some are animal based and the loan is structured around the repayment with a “living loan”, others are structured around a community of individuals working together to create products for sale. At the center of each of our projects is one thing: the opportunity for a hand up from poverty to possibility

Animal Projects

Cow (Masaka, Mityana)

Neighboring farmers invest in themselves by training together and helping each other prepare their farms for a zero-grazing cow.

Each qualified family receives a pregnant cow, which gives birth and produces 18-24 liters of milk each day – enough for the family’s needs and extra to sell. This income is used to improve their diets, send children to school, and make improvements to their home and farm.

After 12 months, the first female calf is passed on to the next qualified family, making this project 100% sustainable. Steps 1 and 2 are then successfully repeated.

Piglet (Masaka)

Post-fistula women receive training in raising and selling pigs, recruiting two neighbors to help them build a zero grazing shed.

Each post-fistula woman receives a high-quality piglet, six months of feed, and vaccinations. As litters are produced, she can sell piglets at market as an income project.

Out of the first litter, she passes on a female piglet to each of her helpers. They in turn pay forward one female piglet out of their first litters back to the project.

 

 

Small Business Projects

SACCO (Jamii Bora)

Members must begin by saving and may borrow two times the amount they have saved. Small groups of 3-5 vouch for each other, guaranteeing each other’s loans.

Loans are for income projects, and have terms of 10% APR to be repaid over 50 weeks. Typical first loan is $15 USD. Most loans are repaid much more quickly.

The Members support each other in successful growth of their businesses. The group offers health insurance, life insurance, and other support programs to aid success. Proceeds fund more loans.

Revolving Loan/ Small Lending Circles (CPS Partners / BUWEA/St. Joseph Matale)

Revolving loan members meet in small groups and receive training and support, and vouch for each other. Small lending circle members meet regularly and contribute to a common “pot” each meeting.

Loans are for income projects. In the revolving loan fund, terms are 12% to be repaid after 4 months. In the small lending circles, terms are 10%, to be repaid after one month. Typical first loans range from $8 USD to $50 USD. Proceeds fund more loans.

In both groups, members support each other, and proceeds fund more and bigger loans.

 

 

Group Projects

Agricultural group projects (Soy-BUWEA, Greenhouses--CPS, St. Augustine University Yogurt Project)

Grassroots organizations access resources to operate an agricultural project to benefit the group. One group employs women members to plan, weed, and harvest soy to manufacture and sell soy milk and soy flour. Another group operates a greenhouse, using the proceeds from vegetable sales to support the group. Another makes and sells yogurt with the group’s asset of a zero grazing two-cow operation.

Support from MPA is in the form of a re-invested loan–as proceeds are realized, the group repays itself to continue to grow.

In all these groups, the project provides wages to employee-members as well as profits that benefit the group.

Value Added group projects (Sewing-CPS, Pharmacy-Good Seed, Bakery-BUWEA, Water filters)

Grassroots organizations operate pay-it-forward-model projects that add value to the community but follow microfinancing principles.

One group teaches and employs members to sew and knit school uniforms. Another employs mothers of children with Down’s Syndrome in a pharmacy project. Another employs members to bake and sell bread. And another provides an economic boost by offering water filters as a form of a community loan.

Proceeds from the group’s sales benefit the members and the community. Healthcare savings from access to clean water are pooled to “pay forward” water filters for more groups.

 

 

Learning Projects

Safe Birth

Women who live in extreme poverty in rural villages are encouraged to come to their local clinics for prenatal care. Midwives at the clinics are equipped with ultrasounds to assess high-risk conditions and educate the mothers to deliver their child in a hospital setting. Clinics are equipped with motorcycle ambulances to improve transportation in the event of emergency situations.

Still in pilot phase, this project asks women to save a little with each prenatal visit, to “self-insure” potential transportation needs.

As the incidence of obstetric fistula injuries decrease through the efforts of this project, it is expected that healthy women will continue to be economically productive and engaged members of their communities.

Scholarships

Students whose families are struggling in extreme poverty, or who are orphans, are provided access to quality education. Some students may even be religious sisters whose families would normally be expected to fund their education, but may come from extreme poverty.

An educational scholarship/microloan is made to fund primary, secondary, vocational school, university, and even medical school.

Students commit, when they have the means following graduation, to pay their scholarship forward by funding another student themselves, growing access to education.

 

 

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