Peace is developing in South Sudan through an unlikely tool: community savings.
Community savings groups promote economic empowerment and peace building across Burundi.
Entrepreneurs in South Sudan turn tanks and weapons of war into farm tools.
Following the national elections earlier this year, political violence in Burundi has contributed to an economic downturn and a loss of investment and aid.
Over 200,000 residents have fled to neighboring countries and there is fear of ongoing violence and reprisals. As a result, many development agencies and nonprofits have scaled back or relocated their operations.
Meanwhile, the people of Burundi face increased insecurity, higher health costs, and a loss of jobs and business opportunities. Four out of five Burundians live on less than $1.25 a day and each job supports an average of 7 or more dependents. According to Unicef, "The potential impact of the current crisis and an economic downturn on children cannot be underestimated. It could be devastating."
Despite these challenges, Five Talents is committed to staying the course in Burundi. Five Talents works with over 25,000 savings group members in Burundi and is pursuing an ambitious plan to expand into another 230 communities. We work with local church partners and leaders, especially in rural communities.
Our savings groups continue to operate and expand and are bringing communities together to focus on local solutions. Through small group savings and loans, families are able to access capital in times of emergency and are cushioned against the impact of decreased government funding of social programs. These groups are very grateful for "friendship in times of trouble" and our regional program coordinator, Claudette appreciates the support and prayers of all those who she knows and those who she does not. The knowledge of people who are praying and committed to walking together gives them courage.
Join us in supporting families in Burundi. Your gift helps to build peace and creates hope and opportunity for the vulnerable poor.