From one meal a day to being a home owner

Francine happily poses for a photo with her husband Jackson
Tuesday, June 15, 2021

With tears rolling down her cheeks, Francine could hardly hold back her sad emotions while she described how her family used to have only one meal a day because they could not afford two meals.

She further mentioned that whenever her family had two meals a day, they would celebrate because the family was mainly used to one meal a day.

Francine 31, is a mother of four. She is married to Jackson for the last 12 years. The family lives in Rukara sector, Kayonza District in Gwiza Area Programme. Francine is a business woman who sells beans in Rukara market. Before Francine and her husband met World Vision, their marriage was at stake and the children’s lives were also in a sorry state. The family was in the first category of wealth ranking in Rwanda commonly known as Ubudehe, and is comprised of the poorest people.

Francine and her husband struggled to sustain their family. Due to the extreme poverty at home, the family always had conflicts which also affected the children. The family shifted from one house to another because they had failed to pay their rent and the land lords would end up chasing them from the house. The children’s moral behavior was affected because they had no permanent place to call home.

Francine(wearing a head wrap) sorting her beans for selling at the market
Francine(wearing a head wrap) sorting her beans for selling at the market


In 2018, World Vision trained a group of people on Empowered World View model in which Francine and her husband participated. This model aimed at changing people’s mind set so they gain self-confidence and become resilient. Francine was completely changed by the training. Overtime, the conflicts in Francine’s family reduced as the trainings carried on. They became determined to work together for the good of their children.

“In the training, we learnt about mindset change and believing in God for a better life. I sat down with my husband and reflected on the trainings we had been given.  We decided to start saving some money from what we got from digging on people’s farms,” says Francine.

Francine continued saving until she had five dollars. She then bought bananas and avocados and started selling them on the street.

From the five dollars, Francine got a profit of 15 dollars. She then borrowed from her savings group 10 dollars to expand her business. She moved her business to the market where she started selling beans.

“I learnt from the training that I have to consume little and save more, since then saving has become my culture. I am a member in two savings groups,” adds Francine.

The training did not only change Francine’s self-confidence, it also united her with her husband whom they always had conflicts. The couple started working together, Francine brought all the money she got from the business and they planned together. They decided on how much they saved and the remaining money would be used to cater for home needs.

After paying back the loan, Francine borrowed 20 dollars from her group. She rented a land and grew potatoes. The couple harvested over 25 sacks of potatoes which they sold and got over 200 dollars. The couple then bought a plot of land where they would construct their house.

They continue with their farming of potatoes; the next season was not as good as the first one however they got some money to start building their house. Francine and her husband started building their house and today the family lives in it.

Thierry 11, is World Vision’s sponsored child, and is happy that his family now has their own house.

“My parents used to spend a lot of money on paying house rent. I thank World Vision for supporting me and for changing my family’s life,” states Thierry.

Owning a house is a thing that pleases everyone in Francine’s household.

Thierry now lives a comfortable life. Francine’s family is very grateful for the Empowered World View trainings and all the support that World Vision has provided to their family.