From starting to the present day
The Eastern African economic area has enjoyed some of the fastest global economic growth rates in recent years. However, at the same time, its countries still have a high prevalence of poverty and lack of universal financial inclusion.
In Eastern Africa, Sparkassenstiftung did smaller interventions since the 1990’s and began its permanent activities in 2009. Since then, Sparkassenstiftung founded the following partnerships in respective project countries:
- Sparkassenstiftung founded its first partnership in 2009, with the Association of Microfinance Institutions in Rwanda (AMIR), in order to professionalize the Rwandan microfinance sector.
- In 2012, the project activities were extended to Burundi by the start of a partnership with the Burundian microfinance umbrella organization, Réseau des Institutions de Microfinance (RIM), with the aim of strengthening the professionalization of the microfinance sector in Burundi.
- In the same year, operations in Tanzania were initiated, with the Tanzanian Association of Microfinance Institutions (TAMFI), as well as with the former Tanzania Postal Bank (TPB), now known as the TPB Bank PLC while single activities had already been conducted in the country before.
- Also in 2012, Sparkassenstiftung supported the foundation of the Rwandan Institute for Cooperatives, Entrepreneurship and Microfinance (RICEM), an academy for vocational education in Rwanda.
- Since 2015, Sparkassenstiftung has been working with the Governmental Rwanda Cooperative Agency (RCA), the main player in the digitalization and consolidation of the 416 small and independent Umurenge Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCOs) into 30 larger district level SACCOs.
- In 2017, Sparkassenstiftung enlarged its project portfolio in Tanzania and partnered with the Karagwe Rural Development and Environmental Conservation Agency (KARUDECA) in Tanzania to promote financial education in primary and secondary schools in the Karagwe region. This fruitful cooperation lasted until December 2019.
- In the same year, Sparkassenstiftung in Tanzania started a partnership with Small Entrepreneurs Loan Facility Microfinance Fund Ltd. (SELF).
- In 2018, Sparkassenstiftung started a new partnership with the Tanzania Cooperative Development Commission (TCDC) and in 2019, a new partnership was established with the Savings and Credit Co-operative Union League of Tanzania (SCCULT).
- In Uganda, a financial education project was commenced at the end of 2018, in partnership with the Association of Microfinance Institutions of Uganda (AMFIU) and Uganda Cooperative Savings and Credit Union (UCSCU).
- In 2019, Sparkassenstiftung started its activities in Kenya and partnered with the Association of Microfinance Institutions in Kenya (AMFI-K) and the African Confederation of Co-operative Savings and Credit Associations (ACCOSCA), whose headquarter is in Kenya.
- In the same year, Sparkassenstiftung in Rwanda started a partnership with the Kigali Independent University (ULK) and in 2020, a partnership was initiated with the National Cooperative Confederation of Rwanda (NCCR), the only Rwandan umbrella organization for cooperatives.
To encourage synergies between existing project activities, institutionalize knowledge transfers and efficiently use human and technical resources, our project activities are currently organized in two regional projects and one green finance project in Burundi.
The two regional projects are named “Vocational and Commercial Education for the Microfinance Sector in Eastern Africa” and “Rural Development in Eastern Africa through Institution Strengthening of the Microfinance Sector”. Both started from October 2019 and both are present in all five project countries.
Our green finance project “Améliorer l’accès des groupes d’épargne au microcrédit pour le financement des latrines agro-écologiques ‹Akasuga›" in Burundi started in July 2019 and is planned to run until October 2020.
If you would like to know more about our projects and partners in Eastern Africa, please feel free to check out the section of “Projects” and “Partners”.