Akua Nimo is a single mother of five and a grandmother of six. Akua, a cocoa farmer in Upper Denkyira West of the Central Region in Ghana sells food in addition to care for her family. This is a challenging task during the cocoa off seasons, when there is no cocoa to harvest and sell.
Akua has a lot of responsibilities as a mother and grandmother. Moreover, some of her grandchildren lost their dad and were brought to her to cater for them. During the times when she was waiting for cocoa to be harvested, she had no money to take care of them and to pay for their school fees. Even the barest necessities were difficult for her to come by. This placed a lot of pressure on Akua and her family.
Akua joined the savings group organized by World Vision four years ago, and like many others in the group, contributes a minimum of GHS 5 (US$ 1) and a maximum of GHS 25(US$ 5) cedis weekly.
Akua needed to improve her family’s situation. She wanted to be able to provide for her family and make sure that her grandchildren did not miss out on the opportunity to be educated. According to her “I want my children and grandchildren to have a better life than I did”.
Akua received a loan of GHS 1000 (US$ 200) from the Savings for Transformation Group to start a rabbit rearing business to put her children and grandchildren in school.
With this loan, Akua was able to grow her business from two rabbits to fifteen. Each rabbit is sold for approximately GHS 90 (US$ 18), allowing her to provide the children’s tuition.
World Vision’s Savings for Transformation program has improved the economic status of Akua Nimo and has empowered her to provide for her children and support her community. She is now able to pay for her children’s education and has hope of a better future for them.
Akua explains that, “I would not have been able to take care of my children and grandchildren if I had not joined the savings group. The savings have made it possible for my family to live a more comfortable life. My life has been totally transformed”
The Savings for Transformation group is one of World Vision’s project models that is used to empower people of same economic status. Through training and capacity building, the model is able to empower parents to provide for their children and take better care of them, avoiding child marriage, child trafficking, child abuse and child labor. In a community wrought with ‘galamsey’ (illegal gold mining), the group has been successful in supporting its members with loans to start small scale businesses, prepare for emergencies and support vulnerable groups.