Convened by:

Peer Exchanges

Date: May 21, 2018

Time: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm

Location: Kigali, Rwanda | Varies by Peer Exchange

Cost: 30 USD


The pre-Conference SG2018 Peer Exchanges will feature a series of field visits open to a variety of attendees – from newcomers to the Savings Groups sector to experts and practitioners of all levels of experience. Similar to the SG2018 technical tracks, each field visit will focus on a unique theme, for instance, highlighting women’s economic empowerment, access to formal financial services, vulnerable populations or providing a general overview. While targeted Peer Exchanges are perfect for experienced practitioners, the introductory visits are designed to provide Conference attendees interested in learning more about Savings Groups – including donors, academics, etc. – the opportunity to engage with local organizations and SG members in the field.

The SEEP Network is delighted to partner with CARE Rwanda, Catholic Relief Services, World Relief Rwanda, and VisionFund Rwanda to offer these four interactive Peer Exchanges to foster peer-to-peer collaboration and learning. Stay tuned for more information on agenda details!

SG2018 Peer Exchange: Integration of Gender and Gender-based Violence Prevention Activities in Savings Groups

CARE Rwanda Village Savings and Loans Association (VSLA) gender gap report’s findings proved that in many cases men were controlling the functioning of the VSLA groups, even if they were not members of those groups. Many women didn’t feel comfortable or confident in taking decisions about a loan without their husband’s approval, and also see the widespread practice of dividing the loan money with their husbands as a way of ensuring that their husband will help them with its repayment. Cases of husbands misusing loan money that they have forced their wives to give them were seen by women as presenting a significant challenge for their effective participation in VSL groups. Peer/change agents within these groups were trained to address gender dynamics issues and to facilitate reflection about gender, power and the ways in which restrictive gender roles and inequitable power relations affect women benefits from saving groups operations.

Join us to explore cases of SGs integrated programing visiting TWITEZIMBERE SG in Bugesera District.

SG2018 Peer Exchange: Introduction to CRS' Savings and Internal Lending Communities (SILC) Methodology

CRS’ Savings and Internal Lending Communities (SILCs) are a type of community-based savings groups to strengthen the livelihoods of the people it serves. SILC groups benefit from the accumulated savings amount to invest in income generating activities.

Because of the model’s success, demand for SILC far outstrips CRS capacity to respond, CRS has pioneered the Private Service Provider (PSP) delivery channel, which prepares SILC agents to become independent service providers operating on a market-led basis, to ensure the long-term (post-project) availability of services. After certification, PSPs continue to form groups on a fee-for-service basis, form peer networks, and recruit apprentices, to deepen delivery capacity and outreach.

Join CRS in an engaging Peer Exchange providing a general introduction to Savings Groups and further exploring the highlights of the SILC methodology.

SG2018 Peer Exchange: The Savings for Life Program: A Faith-based Approach

Participants on this field visit will experience these unique aspects of World Relief’s approach to implementation through visiting a group’s savings meeting, interacting with members to hear about their experiences and testimonies, and engaging with Savings for Life Committee members and field staff. The Savings for Life program, like other World Relief initiatives, is one of spiritual transformation and will offer Peer Exchange participants an intimate look at a faith-based savings approach aimed to fulfil the organization's mission of "empower[ing] the local church to serve the most vulnerable."

Learn more here!

SG2018 Peer Exchange: Access to Formal Financial Services

VisionFund Rwanda (VFR) is a part of VisionFund International and subsidiary of World Vision International operating in more than 40 countries. Beginning in 1997 as a World Vision Microfinance program and in 2004 graduating to a Central Bank Regulated Microfinance Institution (MFI), VFR is now one of the largest MFIs operating in Rwanda with the mission to provide financial and non-financial services to the most rural and underprivileged.

VisionFund Rwanda is delighted to feature its ongoing partnership with CARE Rwanda in supporting Village Savings and Loans Associations (VSLAs) in accessing formal financial services as an SG2018 Peer Exchange. During this field visit participants will learn about the highlights of VFR’s linkage methodology, including:

  • VFR’s main products adapted specifically for VSLAs
  • CARE’s Linkage Readiness Assessment Tool to identify suitable savings groups
  • VFR’s financial literacy training and requirements for opening a savings account a receiving a loan

Join us in the Bugesera District to visit a VSLA and further explore how VFR supports and advises them in their pursuit of suitable formal financial services.



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