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GASABO: Women testify banks as key to become entrepreneurs

Rwanda has implemented various measures to promote women's empowerment in all sectors. Some women entrepreneurs in Rwanda testify that dreams come true, based on self-confidence and determination are what made them dare with commitment on investment and go to banks as possible, with aim toward entrepreneurship. Currently they are able to develop their families and as well as the country. However, they encourage their colleagues who are afraid to let go and learn from them, also based on fruitful motivations from fellows’ entrepreneurs and how policy makers and banks officials urged them in the several years.

WWomen entrepreneurs in the processing, during working hours.

“As of self-confidence and determination., the important thing is to be determined while you have the strength, if you are confident and convinced that it is possible, you can do it. in order to be able to make a profit, worked with commercial banks, whereas women they are given lower interest rates than men, thus as entrepreneurs we cannot progress without working with banks. Mostly, women entrepreneurs, when we go to the bank, they give us a lower interest rate than men." Said Mrs. Christine Mucyo, Women entrepreneur In Bumbogo, Gasabo District.

Mrs. Odette finds that women should be brave and purposeful.

"Living without a goal is difficult to dare, I looked around and found that no one would be upset with me, would help me if I took the first step and supported me. I welcome children and puts them in good hands, and trains them in good manners. Said Mrs. Odette Kantesi, Founder and executive director at Join Others Rwanda (JOR)

“The reason why I am committed to one of the woman entrepreneur, it was because the Government gave women a voice. I have the opportunity to raise my voice to thanks H.E. President of the Republic of Rwanda Paul Kagame. Who gave a speech to a Rwandan woman, which makes me think and working hard, as a team work through Cooperatives. We are working with a bank that supports us in giving us loans so that we can enter into profitable investments. What encouraged him was working together and sharing ideas, then unity and trust gave us the strength to progress our works and embrace economic development. My advises on other women, is embrace self-confidence, self-reliance and empowerment including these ideas, employing between 60-100 women a year.” Said Mrs. Nyirangwabije Therese President of Cooperative Twongere kawa Coko coffee farmers

According to National Women Council, some Female owned businesses, across Country still have a huge gap, yet to access finance due to that financial institutions don’t provide effectively their services to them.

“Banks urged to increase its approach to the Women entrepreneurs Countrywide, so that they can access their services, like to have access to finance and business opportunity trainings, as well as well as mentoring opportunities. And other women empowerment programs toward socio- economic transformation to create and enabling environment for female entrepreneurs to grow their businesses. The Government’s efforts to empower women by encouraging women entrepreneurs through innovative offerings and programs that we believe will add value to their businesses/lives.” Said Mrs. Jackline Kamanzi, the Executive Secretary of Rwanda National Women's Council.

“The benefits of going to the financial institutions where they work is that they take loans and provide to their beneficiaries and improve their business and also families, children and spouses, and achieve sustainable development and contribute to the country in socio-economic development. Our prior goal is to meet and help low income people and empower them to achieve sustainable development. While take loans, and learn to use it appropriately, by improving business. Some are women who started with 200,000 and 300,000 RWF, now they have reached 10 and 20 million. Also, we have a program to "safeguard women", where we give them a loan with an interest rate of 12% per year, and they pay each month depending on the amount of money starting with those who have little ability, they are more daring, and they get more income''. Said Eric Runyambo, Head of Loans in Duterimbere IMF PLC, at the branch office, in Kimironko, Gasabo district.

"The majors reasons some, some don’t access the financial institutions is fear, to not be approved for a loan and some of them others don't have enough information", so when they resist and show them the way and the best line they can follow, they think they can't get a loan, due to a lack of understanding, which require Muchmore awareness campaign toward visibility.” He added.

Chantal focal point for the National Trade Facilitation Committee (NTFC) in MINICOM (Ministry of Trade and Industry). Said “Women have the opportunity to be entrepreneurs and businesses. In the world, women entrepreneurs have reached 16%, women have a voice in Women Chambers in Rwanda, in Africa, and there are women's associations, etc. The remaining obstacles are where women do not know the same information as men, due to the African culture, because the loans given to women are much lower than men. Let's be happy that women go to banks and apply for loans, become entrepreneurs, develop their families and the country, trade, also create jobs, and innovations. 82% of women in Rwanda do business, where 16%-17% work in the service sector and 1%-2% of women in business at the entrepreneurial level. Reports show that women in business in Rwanda are becoming more diverse in special sectors such as information technology and communication (ICTS).

WWomen entrepreneurs in the processing, during working hours.
Coffee Farm.
Women entrepreneurs at the work place In Bumbogo sector.
Mrs. Odette Kantesi, Founder and executive director at Join Others Rwanda (JOR).
Eric Runyambo, Head of Loans in Duterimbere IMF PLC.
Eric Runyambo, Head of Loans in Duterimbere IMF PLC,during working hours in the office.

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