The Rafiki Village Project provides a quarterly stipend to each of the five schools in Dumbeta Ward. The teachers at each school decide how these funds are used. They have been used for school supplies, cleaning supplies, seeds for the school gardens, and minor repairs such as broken windows.
Since 2017 the Rafiki Village Project has been providing a quarterly stipend to the Dumbeta Dispensary, the local community health clinic. The dispensary’s staff decides how to spend these funds. Funds are used for medications, medical supplies and clinic improvements. This stipend has greatly increased the amount of antibiotics and other medications the dispensary is able to purchase. This has been a great benefit to the community.
SAVINGS GROUP LOANS
Community savings groups are a time honored African tradition. A savings group is a member-owned cooperative composed of a small number of people who save together and take small loans from those savings. Savings groups are democratic, transparent and sustainable. They help promote community cohesiveness and prosperity. In 2018 the teachers at Gijega Primary School as well as a group of residents of the surrounding village of Gishaji each started savings groups. The savings groups asked the Rafiki Village Project for small loans to use as seed money. This project will most likely be expanded to other groups within Dumbeta Ward.
One of our guiding principles is a commitment to ensuring the long-term viability of the projects we fund. We believe it is more important to maintain existing projects than to undertake new ones. While maintenance of the projects is primarily the responsibility of the community, we understand that repairs and maintenance can be expensive. With this in mind we started funding a maintenance program. This money is being used to purchase cleaning supplies, repair broken windows and doors, and buy paint to keep walls looking fresh.