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TOOLS for HOPE MONTHLY REPORTS


Above:  The Twisungane Group


Above:  The Dufatanye Group


May 2024, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

DUFATANYE GROUP


Introduction
The Dufatanye group's success is a personal triumph and a beacon of hope for the entire community.  Their hearts are brimming with gratitude as they express their profound appreciation for the transformative effects of pig farming on their family and the community.  The financial stability, sense of security, and hopeful outlook for the future that pig farming has brought them is a testament to the power of sustainable agriculture.  This success story is not just theirs but a shared victory that inspires others to follow suit.

This month, Diane visited two farmers who, despite not receiving a piglet, made a profit by raising their pig.  This success story is not just a one-off but a testament to the enormous potential of integrating livestock into smallholder farming.  It’s not just feasible; it's productive and profitable, paving the way for a sustainable future in agriculture. Among those Diane visited were Paul, a 70-year-old man, and Cecilia, an 80-year-old woman, living proof of this potential.


Seeing how they profited from their farming using pig manure was a pleasure.
Paul shared with Diane a remarkable transformation in his fields.  The organic matter and nutrients in pig manure have revitalized his soil, leading to healthier plants and increased crop yields. His bananas and fruits now flourish, resulting in a more bountiful harvest.  Raising pigs has allowed him to diversify crop production and boost farm productivity.  The nutrient-rich pig manure has supported the cultivation of various crops, including bananas, fruits, and vegetables.  Each season, he experiments with new crop combinations and rotations, leveraging the benefits of pig manure to optimize yields and maximize profits.  This diversification strategy not only spreads risk but also enhances soil fertility and sustainability in the long run.

Before getting the pig, he struggled to get a good quantity of bananas; however, after receiving the pig with the loan from TFH, he began utilizing pig manure as fertilizer for his crops.  As a result, he has experienced a significant improvement in banana and fruit production.  Each banana bunch weighs approximately 15 kilograms (~ 33+ lb.).  Moreover, he has been able to sell some of the bananas, earning $7 for each bunch.


 He had a banana-cultivated area and grew oranges, which he started selling for $1 per kg. Each season, he could harvest 170 kilograms of oranges.

 
          Paul and his wife, with Diane



Cecilia, an 80-year-old woman, utilized pig manure as fertilizer for her banana and cassava crops for her family’s consumption and sale.  With her banana plantation and cassava fields, she managed to get significant quantities.  For instance, she could harvest 150 kilograms of cassava each season, selling it for $6 per kilogram.  She sold 60 kilograms, earning $360. Additionally, she retained 90 kilograms for family consumption.

Way forward
As Diane continues to visit other members, she is excited to share insights on how they can harness the power of pig manure composting to increase their productivity significantly.  This is a promising avenue for sustainable farming and community development, and your support can help us make a real difference.  Your donations will be directly used to provide training and resources for farmers, purchase livestock, and expand our sustainable farming initiatives, ensuring that every dollar you contribute is making a tangible impact.
 

 TWISUNGANE Group

Introduction
Twisungane group is doing well.  We celebrated with the family of Claude and Claudine for their cow, which gave birth to a calf. They got milk and fertilizers.


We recently discussed buying a boat, which could significantly enhance the group’s farming capabilities. However, we are facing financial challenges. We attempted to secure a loan from the bank, but the collateral issue proved a significant hurdle. We are now exploring other options to raise funds, such as selling land. Your donations have helped us overcome similar financial barriers and realize our farming goals.

Way forward
One member tried to adopt composting practices, but others didn’t.  Samuel (Twisungane group elected leader) offers technical assistance and support to fellow Twisungane farmers interested in composting.  Diane will help to guide area selection, compost pile construction, ingredient selection, and management practices to ensure successful composting outcomes.
 

We appreciate your support.

You can see several of the YouTube-TFH videos at   

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8rXd4ANUEo&list=UUP8py1ZgYw-BJmnRM5wodEw

You can also search for Tools for Hope Inc. and click on Videos.

http://www.toolsforhope.org/

Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.

Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it.          

Donations via AffiniPay

 




April 2024, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

TWISUNGANE GROUP

                                                  Photo of Twisungane group

Introduction

We are pleased to share an update on the Twisungane Group's progress. This month, Diane visited Donat at his home, and we are excited to report that he has taken a significant step towards expanding his small livestock farming operation. Donat invested in ducks and even purchased a piglet by leveraging the funds from Twisungane group savings. He aims to enhance his family's livelihood by selling piglets and utilizing pig manure for crop fertilization.

We commend Donat for his dedication and commitment to improving his family's well-being and applaud all members for their innovative ideas. Together, they can empower each other to achieve greater prosperity.


Moreover, during Diane's visit, all group members enthusiastically shared their business ideas to enhance their quality of life. One standout idea proposed by the group is to venture into running a waterway ferry project.

The idea is to run a waterway transport business using boats.  Diane supported the idea and helped them do a SWOT Analysis.

The concept originated from the need to facilitate efficient and affordable movement of people and goods between different areas.

During (TFH President) Richard's visit to Twisungane in Bugesera district last December, we identified a promising opportunity along the Akanyaru River. This river experiences flood waters and is strategically located for our proposed venture. On the opposite side lies Nyarugenge, a bustling sector of Kigali that holds significant potential for commercial activities.

The plan involves utilizing medium-sized boats for commercial purposes, enabling the seamless transportation of passengers and cargo across the river. By leveraging this waterway, we aim to address the challenges associated with mobility and logistics in the region while unlocking new opportunities for economic growth and development.

We can turn this vision into a reality that benefits our community and beyond.

From Bugesera to Nyarugenge, it takes about 10 minutes to ride a boat and 35 minutes to ride a motor bicycle; when you go on foot, it takes 1 hour and 20 minutes.  This business is a solution.  Water transport enables the transportation of large and heavy items at a low cost.  It will make it the cheapest mode of travel across the river.

  • Strengths
  • Boats operate more cheaply, making it the cheapest mode of travel across large distances
  • Water transport is cheaper than other ways
  • Boat produces minor environmental damage
  • Boats are the modes of transport with a higher capacity for transporting more goods.
  • Low initial investment
  • Weakness
  •  Boats need qualified people who know how to operate them.  They don’t have that person.
  • Opportunity
  • Flexible pricing
  •   Threats
  • Natural disasters and weather disruptions

Marketing Plan

Product:  They will provide a service for carrying people and their luggage, as well as 20 people and their luggage.

The travel prices will be $1 per person with his luggage and $2 for luggage only.

Estimated profit per day if fees are $1 per person and they will get at least $60-$80 per day

FINANCIAL PLAN

Capital requirements:

They need $2,000 and start with one boat.

The critical costs needed in starting or growing this boat business:

Items

Cost

Boat

$1500

Anchor of boat

$250

Chains

$10

Life Jacket and other safety equipment

$20

Salaries of the sailor

$50

Boat Insurance

$70 per year

Taxes

$50 per year

a logbook

$15

Other unexpected things

$35

Total

$2000

Way forward:

Where did they propose to raise money?  Selling their plot or getting a bank loan.  They are still working on it, and Diane talked with Allan Bulamba about bank loan information.  Diane will keep sharing updates with us.  



DUFATANYE GROUP

  d

                           Photo of Dufatanye members 

Introduction

We are delighted to share the latest progress report on our pig farming project within the Dufatanye Group. The project continues to thrive, with significant advancements and positive outcomes being observed as we near the target year.

Key Highlights:

1. Sustainable Progress:

The pig farming project under the Dufatanye Group is progressing steadily, with remarkable achievements being made along the way. As we approach the final three months of this target year, we are optimistic about meeting and even exceeding our set goals.

2. Farmer-Centric Approach:

At TFH, our primary objective is to empower and support farmers by actively listening to their needs and preferences. Rather than imposing our ideas, we strive to collaborate closely with the community to ensure mutual growth and success.

3. Socioeconomic Impact:

The success of the pig farming initiative has not only resulted in financial gains for each group member but has also played a vital role in enhancing socioeconomic dynamics at both household and national levels. The realization of profits has underscored the importance of agriculture as a key driver of economic prosperity and social well-being.

Looking Ahead:

As we enter this pivotal phase of our project, we remain committed to fostering sustainable development and creating lasting positive impacts within the community. By working together and leveraging the strengths of each individual, we aim to achieve even greater milestones in the days ahead.

We expect every farmer to reach $600 as a profit at the end of the project.

The benefit will not only be to get money from selling the pigs; they will also get manure to fertilize their crops.  The research shows that pig manure is an excellent source of plant nutrients, including Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), and Potassium (K).  It can be used to replace much of the chemical fertilizer required to fertilize grassland and crops and produce very substantial reductions in fertilizer costs.  It also has a long fertilizer efficiency, activating the soil and improving its physical and biological properties.  Using pig manure organic fertilizer can improve the quality and yield of crops, reduce labor intensity in agricultural production, and enhance the ecological balance of the soil.

Every member of the group will need $300 to build 3 sheds.  In general, they need $6,000, which means that now we assume that in June, they will be close to repaying the loan and have $2,000.  They ask us to support them with $4000 for your consideration.

Way forward

In this project, Diane will train them to prepare pig manure using various methods such as fermentation, composting, and mixing with other organic materials.  

We appreciate your support.

You can see several of the YouTube-TFH videos at   

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8rXd4ANUEo&list=UUP8py1ZgYw-BJmnRM5wodEw

You can also search for Tools for Hope Inc. and click on Videos.


http://www.toolsforhope.org/

Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.

Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it.          

Donations via AffiniPay




March 2024, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

DUFATANYE GROUP

 

                           Photo of Dufatanye members  

 Introduction

The Dufatanye group is doing excellent, and the pig farming project is still making good progress. This month, two members, a man and a woman, got piglets. The lady got nine piglets, and the man got three piglets. Both the pigs and their piglets are doing well.

  You can see the photos below.

Diane visited Olive.  Seeing nine healthy piglets in the shed was great, and she started counting the money she would get through piglets.  She wants to sell six piglets after two months and is expected to earn $240.00, an excellent step to improve her life with her family.


In the above pictures, Ngarambe is at his pig shed. His pig gave birth to three piglets. He is one of the farmers whose pig gave birth to a few piglets. This is an exceptional case. Diane encouraged him to continue caring for his pig, and we hope it will provide more piglets in the next cycle.

Dufatanye does not only farm pigs. They also grow maize, and every member gets between 80 kg and 150 kg of it. This means they get maize flour to make porridge, which is used as food for their family and animals.

They used the cob model to avoid post-harvesting loss (maize is tied up and placed face-down in a row with the dry leaves shielding the cob from water.  Maize is then placed in shelters, which reduces contamination to manageable levels, usually reaching the required moisture content by buyers at 13.5-16 percent, benefiting the farmers and enabling them to supply high-quality maize to local agribusinesses.  They have a buyer who will give them $65.00 per kg, which will help them prepare for the next agriculture season.

heIt is fo

Way forward

Dufatanye group members continued to repay the loan at a reasonable level.  They have already repaid $1234.00 (of the original $2,000 TFH loan used to purchase their pigs).  Next month, we will discuss the next project according to their need.

 

 

TWISUNGANE Group 

              

Photo of Twisungane group

Introduction

Twisungane group families are doing great.

This month, they met and talked about using Kindles; Diane introduced its benefits.  After the conversation, they concluded that they would start by reading a book of small stories together during school break to help them begin cultivating the reading culture.  After assessing if they will use them appropriately, Diane prefers to give them the Kindles next year. 

The primary issue is that many parents need to understand the value of reading, and even their children do not have a reading culture.  In Rwanda, especially in rural areas, there is a poor reading culture and a lack of libraries in villages, which affects the local population.  Considering this, Diane asked the parents to encourage their children to read at home; we believe children should start reading early.  We concluded that the first thing is working with parents to persuade them to encourage children to read, even if they do not understand what the child is reading, and to avoid misusing the Kindle, we started a journey to read different books.

 Diane visited Claude and Claudine's family, who bought a cow using their family savings.  Diane congratulated them for the significant step they took.  They have four children.  This is a good achievement because their family will get milk to drink and manure to fertilize crops.


Claudine, Diane, and Claude 

The Cow will give birth in April.




We appreciate your support.

You can see several of the YouTube-TFH videos at   

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8rXd4ANUEo&list=UUP8py1ZgYw-BJmnRM5wodEw

You can also search for Tools for Hope Inc. and click on Videos.


http://www.toolsforhope.org/

Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.

Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it.          

Donations via AffiniPay





February 2024, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter


Introduction

Twisungane group is doing great.  Their children all returned to school, and none stayed home due to losing school fees, which is a good achievement for them.  Samuel got a driving license; it is a challenging task here in Rwanda because it requires time and money, at least $350.  It is a good accomplishment and opportunity for him to get a job.

This month, we discussed what they want to achieve and set goals for this year.  They set goals in different areas of life, including social, economic, and spiritual.  They didn’t set many goals but a few ones. They tried to be SMART in goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timely).  Diane encourages people to be proactive instead of reactive, which will allow them to reach their goals.

In economic aspects (Farming activities and finances)

  • 1.    They want to Increase livestock farming in their home; every group member will buy at least two small livestock (Rabbits, Goats, and Chickens) within eight months.  And within a year, three farmers will buy a cow to get milk for their families.
  • 2.   They want to grow a kitchen garden (vegetables and fruits) in every home and at least two gardens in every member of the group home to fight against malnutrition in their children.
  • 3.   They want to grow market-oriented vegetables (eggplants, cabbages, and tomatoes) 3 members will do it as an income-generating activity to increase their agricultural business efficiency and profitability.
  • 4.   They want to work with banks to ask for a loan for doing other small businesses besides plot selling.  Diane will link them with Allan Bulamba (Joram’s brother) to explain more about working with the bank, how they get a loan, which requirements, and when to pay the loan.
  • 5.   They want to increase their annual savings by 10% compared to last year.
  • 6.   To conserve more resources, they will decrease the chemicals used in their farming operations by 25% over six months.  Diane hopes to help them use a more natural approach with fewer herbicides and pesticides.

Social aspect:

  • 7.   For helping their kids become fluent in English.  Diane committed to preparing debates for different topics and fellowship during school breaks.

Spiritual aspect:

  • 8.   Improving growth in faith, they will gather once a month to read the Bible and fellowship with others.
  • 9.   They asked other kids for fellowship during the school break in the summer.  




Introduction

Dufatanye farmers group is doing well.  They are grateful for what they achieved last year and want to go above to achieve more this year.  This is the third year the Dufatanye group has been working with TFH.  They are sending their warm thanks and greetings to all TFH staff.

One of the group's lady’s pigs gave birth this month but also lost her pig unexpectedly, but the piglet survived.  The pig showed signs of illness, so we called the veterinarian.  When he arrived, he gave the pig an anti-parasitic medication, and three hours later, the pig died.  She decided to sell it, and she got $85.

 

Diane helped Dufatanye set goals for what they wanted to achieve this year.  The Dufatanye group set goals according to the pig farming project to improve their lives in different areas, including social, economic, and spiritual aspects.  They have more ideas about the pig farming project, but this year, they chose to continue to raise the pigs.  They tried to be SMART in goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timely).

 Economic aspect:

  • 1.   They will be finished repaying the pig project loan in June this year.
  • 2.   After the loan repayment, they plan to continue working on the pig project by expanding pig sheds.  Every member wants to build 3 sheds. They expect to get $800 from 4 big pigs as a profit after one year. We will continue to work on this project.  Diane will share more details about next month.
  • 3.   They want to increase crop production by 20% due to getting manure from pigs
  • 4.   They plan to grow apple trees.  Ten people want to raise at least two apple trees to see if they will resist their local climate within a year.
  • 5.    They will increase their monthly savings by 50% compared to last year's.  They moved from $2 to $3 per member within the month they expect to get $720 within a year
  • 6.   Use compost pits in their garden to improve plant growth and health and provide plant nutrients in a stable organic form within eight months.

Social aspect:

  • 1. For helping their kids become fluent in English.  Diane committed to preparing debates for different topics and fellowship during school break.

Spiritual aspect:

  • 1.   They will gather monthly to read the Bible and fellowship with others.
  • 2.   They ask for another kid’s fellowship during the school break in the summer.


We appreciate your support.

You can see several of the YouTube-TFH videos at   

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8rXd4ANUEo&list=UUP8py1ZgYw-BJmnRM5wodEw

Or by searching for Tools for Hope Inc. and ‘clicking’ on Videos.


http://www.toolsforhope.org/

Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 
         

Donations via AffiniPay





January 2024, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

In December 2023, a team consisting of Richard, the president of TFH (Tools for Hope), Diane, our mentor from TFH Rwanda, Marcellin, our interpreter, and Fred, our driver, visited the two farmer groups. This newsletter aims to highlight the achievements of these groups throughout the year.

The successes of these farmer groups are primarily attributed to the hard work and dedication of the farmers themselves. Their commitment and efforts have been instrumental in achieving positive outcomes.

Additionally, we would like to express our gratitude towards Diane for her invaluable support as a mentor. Her guidance and expertise have been crucial in empowering these farmer groups and helping them overcome challenges.

Furthermore, we thank the TFH Board of Directors for their continuous support and strategic guidance. Their contributions have been essential in shaping the direction and success of these initiatives.

Lastly, we would like to recognize Marcellin and Fred for their professionalism during the home and community visits with the farmers. Their assistance has facilitated effective communication, ensuring fruitful interactions and successful outcomes.

Overall, these visits have been made possible and fruitful through collaborative efforts between farmers, TFH mentor Diane, support from TFH's Board of Directors, and dedicated individuals like Marcellin and Fred.

                                                          DUFATANYE GROUP


Photo of Dufatanye members with Richard and Marcellin (far left in photo).

 Introduction

The Dufatanye farmers group is doing well.  They were happy to see Richard again and expressed their feelings, and we had a good time together.  They shared that they were thankful for TFH and proposed a project for next year (procuring a milling machine).

We are at the end of the year, and they are grateful to God and Tools for Hope and how they improve their lives through their support.  They are safe and happy to see what they achieved throughout the year.  We discussed and evaluated how the year went to see where we didn’t work well and how and where we will improve. We are grateful to them because of the unity and harmony they have.  No conflicts occurred among them.

Furthermore, when this year started, they had a couple of goals they wanted to accomplish this year, such as:

  • They tried to care for and encourage one another through visiting and sharing.
  • They opened an account for their monthly savings and a TFH account with Diane to repay their pig loan.
  • They have $1000 for the pig loan. 
  • They used their monthly savings to manage specific family issues and to enable them to borrow money from their savings accounts to solve problems with pig farming activities.
  • Half of the group members expected piglets, but eight got piglets and others got money from piglets through selling.
  • Every group member has medical insurance.
  • Crop production increased from pig manure by 10% compared to last year.

Due to the idea about growing apples, Diane tested soil pH from different farmers’ gardens because before planting your apple tree, it is a good idea to have your soil tested to determine the type of soil you have, the pH level, and if it is lacking any essential nutrients and minerals. If the ground at the planting site is too acidic or alkaline, it will affect apple trees' growth and fruit production.

 Apple trees like a soil pH of close to neutral.  If the soil pH is too acidic or alkaline, it will affect nutrient absorption, resulting in poor tree and fruit development.  Apple trees like a soil pH close to neutral, so about 6.0-7.0.

To evaluate the soil, Diane used vinegar and baking soda.  Here’s how Diane did it:

Test for Alkalinity

•   Place equal amounts into two separate containers.

  • Add 1/2 cup of water to one soil sample container and mix it with a spoon.  Then, she added 1/2 cup of white vinegar, and the soil showed a visible bubbling or fizzing action.  This means it has an alkaline pH.  And has a pH level of 7-8.
  • Test for Acidity
  • Diane added 1/2 cup of distilled water to the second soil container and mixed it.  Then, she added 1/2 cup of baking soda.  If the soil bubbles or fizzes, that means it's acidic.  A minimal amount of fizzing reaction is average.
    The more the fizzing action, the higher the soil pH is.  Because most soils are naturally slightly acidic, any reaction at all with this test usually indicates that you have alkaline soil.

    Apple trees are very adaptable, but they require well-drained soil.  We also consider the type of soil, not only soil pH.  The Dufatanye have Loam soils, the ‘holy grail’ for gardeners—the perfect balance of clay, sand, silt, and organic matter. 

    Loam soils are loose and look rich; they typically absorb water and store moisture well.  They can be clay, sand, or silt-based.  They contain more nutrients and humus than sandy soils, have better drainage and infiltration of water and air than silt- and clay-rich soils, and are easier to till than clay soils. However, after testing and considering soil types, Diane advised them that adding organic matter like compost and aged manure would improve their soil composition.


    One farmer, John Paul, started to grow with six apple trees 

    Way forward
    Diane will share later what they want to achieve in 2024.  They wish you a happy, prosperous year.


      TWISUNGANE Group


                 Photo of Twisungane group members with Richard.

       

      Introduction

      The Twisungane group is doing great.  They were happy to see Richard again.  It was a time to express their gratitude for TFH and their needs.

      This month was the time for reflection on the past year; Diane gave them time to reflect on what they had accomplished, what went wrong, and where they still needed to grow.  Diane appreciated their efforts to support one another and ensure none of them felt excluded from the group.

      Additionally, they made an effort in different areas, including social, spiritual, and financial, compared to the previous year.  What they accomplished this year is as follows:

      • They used their internal savings and loans to solve family issues because every group member had the right to pool their money to help each other meet basic needs and invest in income-generating activities.  Most members take loans to pay for their family’s health insurance, start small businesses, buy small livestock like ducks and rabbits, and grow vegetables.  They repaid the loans after three months.  It was the deadline with a low-interest rate.
      • Through their weekly savings, they were able to save more than $200 (200,000 Rwf) this year.
      • They increased their family's nutrition by maintaining kitchen gardens to avoid malnutrition.  Every family member has at least one kitchen garden near their house.  They were also taught about sanitation, hygiene, and how to cook healthy food for their children and themselves.
      • Children had a holiday fellowship in summer, which created an environment of sharing, interacting, and learning the word of God together
      • They bought land, but they are still waiting for a client.
      • Through bible study, we interacted, shared, and encouraged one another.  And we planned to visit one another.
      • We solved conflicts among the members about refusing to pay group loans.

      Way forward

      After reflecting on what they did, we will then set goals for 2024.  Diane will share it with us in January.

      They wish you a happy new year.

                    Praying for them!!!

      We appreciate your support.

      You can see several of the YouTube-TFH videos at   

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8rXd4ANUEo&list=UUP8py1ZgYw-BJmnRM5wodEw

      Or by searching for Tools for Hope Inc. and ‘clicking’ on Videos.


      http://www.toolsforhope.org/

      Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
      Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 
               

      Donations via AffiniPay



      December 2023, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

      TWISUNGANE Group


      Photo of Twisungane members (Celestin on the right side, Samuel, Thacien, Claudine, and Donat)

      Introduction

      Twisungane group is doing great.  Seeing how they tried to start small businesses is a great joy.  An older man called Celestin is a treasure of the Twisungane farmer group.  He started raising a rabbit with the money he had saved.  This is a good step for Twisungane to be independent and encourage growth.  He began with one rabbit but aimed to grow more, giving an example for others on how to start with small livestock.  The price of one small rabbit is $1.00 or 1000 Rwf. which is not much and affordable for every member.  We still encourage one another to learn from others.

       

      Raising rabbits has more benefits than challenges, which motivated him to raise them.

      Rabbits are considered economically valuable as a source of meat.  Rabbit manure is highly valued in agriculture and gardening due to its nutrient-rich composition, providing a natural and potent fertilizer that enhances soil fertility and promotes healthy plant growth.  One sustainable, effective, and eco-friendly way to make organic fertilizer is by using rabbit waste.  Rabbit waste is rich in nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, essential for plant growth.

      But there are also challenges in raising rabbits.  Rabbits are highly vulnerable to predators, and it is hard to resist diseases and climate.

      Other news

      Because of heavy rain, they faced flooding again in the small part of the land near the river; they lost their eggplant, sweet potatoes, and cabbages because the flood washed them away.  It was not easy for them because it affected them.


                    Praying for them!

       

       


      DUFATANYE GROUP


                               Photo of Dufatanye members


       Introduction

      Dufatanye farmers group is doing well.  They were experiencing such good progress in the pig farming project when they started selling piglets to raise money to repay their loan, improve their farming activities (they get manure for fertilizers), and improve their lives at home.  We hope that in the first year of project implementation, everyone in the group will experience the benefits of raising pigs as our goal.

       There are a few problems along the way with this project.  But also, there are suggested solutions for such issues.  Here are the most recent details regarding the project concerning pig farming, which started with twenty pigs, one pig for each family. 

      • Eight members in the group had pigs that gave birth,
      • while two members’ pigs had an abortion problem. 
      • Suddenly, two members' pigs died.  As Diane mentioned in the August report, a lady lost her pig.  The veterinarian decided to slaughter it, and the lady sold the meat and purchased another smaller pig than she had.  She made the decision herself to buy another.  Now she has another one.  Also, another man lost his pig.  Veterinary did not precisely know the cause of that death, then decided to throw it away as an encouragement through their monthly savings.  Other members of the group committed to supporting him by buying another pig.  They will do it in December. 
      • Three members are waiting for piglets because their pigs are in the gestation period (between breeding and birth).
      • Five members are still waiting because their pigs have trouble getting or staying pregnant.  Many factors can cause delayed fertility or pregnancy for pigs, but pigs are not the same and don’t live in the same condition.

      Diane visited every member.  She detected some issues and found that the two had poor heat detection.  They did not know well whether their pigs were in heat.  Others thought that some of them had infertility issues in their pigs because they tried to use boar (male pig) during heat detection and waited until 114 days (~three months), and nothing happened.

      An example is a lady called Ruth, who used artificial insemination.  When you see her pig, it seems ready to be mated and shows signs of heat, and after artificial insemination, it shows signs of pregnancy, like slight abdominal distention.  The vulva may become swollen and red, but after a few days, nothing happened, which confused us.

       

      Way forward

      •  Diane advised them to increase the frequency of heat checking.
      •  We decided to sell Ruth’s pig to purchase other pigs because they wasted money and time without producing.  Replacing it might be the answer.
      • Members who had an abortion issue are waiting for other heat detection.

      They still paid the loan on time, and their goal is to finish it in May next year.

      Apart from raising pigs, Diane will test soil PH next month to grow apple trees; they are encouraged to develop them because of their soil fertility and climate change. It is different from the Twisungane group.

      Be blessed

      Thank you for your support.

      You can see several of the YouTube-TFH videos at   

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8rXd4ANUEo&list=UUP8py1ZgYw-BJmnRM5wodEw

      Or by searching for Tools for Hope Inc. and ‘clicking’ on Videos.


      http://www.toolsforhope.org/

      Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
      Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 
               

      Donations via AffiniPay



      November 2023, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

      DUFATANYE GROUP



      Introduction

      Dufatanye group is doing well.  This month, there were two farmers, Isaiah and Vestine, whose pigs gave birth.  They are happy and grateful because their pigs gave birth.

      Isaiah is a young man among others in the group, but he has two children.  Diane thanks him because he applied what he has learned about how to take care of his pig with his wife; their pigs are fed well, and they are delighted because his pig gave birth to 8 piglets. These include four female piglets and four male piglets.   As you see in the picture, all piglets look good and healthy.  He told Dime that after two months, he wanted to sell four piglets and expand his shed, and he expected to sell each piglet for $85.00.  He is encouraged to continue to raise pigs.


      Isaiah and his pigs 



      Vestine is a young lady with one child and is pregnant.  Her pig gave birth to 7 piglets, but suddenly, one piglet died after birth.  But she continued to care for the others, and now they are in good health.  Diane advised her to improve hygiene on her pig and in the shed.  Because when Diane visited her, her pig and shed were not clean.  Other members are still waiting for their piglets.  Diane will share with us the issues they faced in the next month.

      Dufatanye members are still paying the loan monthly as they can.

      Blessings from the Dufatanye Group

       

       

                                                          TWISUNGANE Group


      Photo of Twisungane members (from right to left: Epiphanie, Samuel, Josiane, Richard, Celestin, Diane, Claudine, and Richard)

       

       Introduction

      Twisungane group is doing great.  They started their bible study with Diane; they attended and participated in sharing through scripture.  They read in Luke 5:17-26 the story of Jesus Forgiving and healing a paralyzed Man. Jesus has the authority on earth to forgive our sins and heal our diseases.  Not only ourselves but also our relatives, friends, and neighbors who are not saved when we bring them to Christ and when we have faith.  This was what they took as a highlight. 

      They enjoyed the moment together as everyone was willing to participate.  After sharing the scriptures, we shared our thanksgiving and prayer requests.  Some of them have spouses and relatives who are not saved; We prayed for them and others who got sick.

      Apart from the spiritual life, Diane and the group discussed growing apples; Diane shared the advantages of growing apples and asked them if they could accept growing apples. 

      They responded that they did not accept the idea and gave Diane some facts like climate change issues in their area.  Drought is the significant impact of climate change experienced in the Bugesera district.  Apple trees cannot tolerate their climate.  Apples tend to thrive in environments where it's cold in the winter, moderate in the summer, and has medium to high humidity rather than a hot and dry climate.

      After discussion, Diane also assessed soil PH by using the method TFH shared with Diane.  

      According to that soil assessment and their insights, they told me they would continue growing some vegetables instead of apples.

      Tools for Hope is willing to hear farmers' ideas instead of forcing them to do what they do not want.

      Thank you for your support.

      You can see several of the YouTube-TFH videos at   

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8rXd4ANUEo&list=UUP8py1ZgYw-BJmnRM5wodEw

      Or by searching for Tools For Hope Inc. and ‘clicking’ on Videos.


      http://www.toolsforhope.org/

      Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
      Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 
               

      Donations via AffiniPay




      http://www.toolsforhope.org/

      Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
      Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 
               

      Donations via AffiniPay



      October 2023, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter


      TWISUNGANE Group

       

      Outside Claudine’s home:  Claudine on the left to right, Celestin, Diane, Venuste, Samuel and Richard

      Introduction

      The Twisungane farmer's group has been doing well.  They started agriculture season A, which runs from September to January.  They grow beans and maize. 

      A tremendous step has been taken because they no longer struggle to get seeds and fertilizers at the start of the agriculture season.  This is because they used their weekly savings, which helped them to buy seeds and fertilizers.

      Apart from improving their lives through agricultural activities.  Diane also thought that now is a great time to build a community where they experience spiritual growth by creating a small bible study group.  Diane introduced them to the idea of creating a bible study group; they received it joyfully.  Such an activity helps them become more like Jesus in every area. 

      All members of Twisungane are not Christian, and many are old, but it is also an excellent approach to share the gospel (demonstration of God’s love for the world) with them.  This group will also be a place where members feel loved, served, bear each other’s burden, encouraged, exhorted, prayed for, equipped, speak truth in love, confess sins, and treat each other as precious members of one body and care and share, to challenge and support, to confide and acknowledge, to forgive and be forgiven, to laugh and weep together, to be accountable to each other, to watch over each other, to grow together and pray for one another’s needs.

      In the picture at the beginning of this newsletter, we were at Claudine’s house.  We discussed where and when we would meet, and they decided to gather once a week, rotating between one of the members' homes.  Pray for us.  We hope Jesus will restore and save us together.

                                          

       

      DUFATANYE GROUP



                               Photo of Dufatanye members

       Introduction

      Dufatanye group is doing well and very thankful that their children had a good fellowship; it has been a blessing to them to see their children learn the word of God, pray together, and learn from one another.  They requested that Tools for Hope organize this fellowship each year during the school holidays if convenient.

      We continue to thank God for supporting them in the Pig farming project.  This month, there is a farmer called Azarias whose pig gave birth to 6 piglets. All piglets are healthy.


      He fed their piglets to help his sow(pig); he separated the piglets and sow in the same shed but in different cages and allowed the piglet to suckle milk from its mother 8-10 times a day.  It is an excellent technique to help his sow to grow without stress.


      Diane encouraged them to continue the culture of savings.  They do it weekly, helping them buy animal feed, seeds, and fertilizer and pay school fees for their children.  Not only that, but occasionally, a group member needs more money to purchase drugs for their pig, so the other members of the group lend money to them so that they can do so.  After a given time agreed upon by group members, they pay back the money.

      Other members are still waiting for their pigs to give birth.

      Be blessed.

      You can see several of the YouTube-TFH videos at   

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8rXd4ANUEo&list=UUP8py1ZgYw-BJmnRM5wodEw

      Or by searching for Tools For Hope Inc. and ‘clicking’ on Videos.


      http://www.toolsforhope.org/

      Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
      Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 
               

      Donations via AffiniPay



      September 2023, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

                                           DUFATANYE GROUP

       

                                 Photo of Children and their parents

      Introduction

      This month, we had an excellent children's fellowship event.  We thank God for his work in Children.  It was a great joy to meet and learn together with children, and it has been Diane's privilege to work with the children, not only with them but also with their parents.

       Dufatanye group thanks the Lord for using TFH to support them financially to improve their lives and spiritually through teaching their children the word of God.  In this fellowship, the kids and Diane had a great moment; we interacted by sharing the word of God, food and drinks, and different games.

      The kids were excited about playing, learning the word of God, and eating with one another.

       Kids enjoyed food and drinks together.


      Diane separated Youth and Children twice according to the lesson she was supposed to teach them.  This allowed each age to interact and learn from each other.


      The first class of children was from 4 to 12 years old.  They learned about to love and grow in Jesus.  In this class, I focused on the parable of the Lost son from Luke 15:11-32

      After the lesson, there was a memory verse; they recited the memory verses from John 3:16.


      The youth group was from 13-20 years old.

      We learnt through discussion, and the topic was  ″How the world sees homosexuality and how God sees and hates it.

      We read

      •        Genesis 19:1-14
      •        Romans 1:21-28
      •       1 Corinthians 6:9-10

      Diane separated them into two groups to discuss the word of God, but all of them did not have Bibles, which was a challenge; they requested TFH to kindly give them gifts of the Bible to help them improve the culture of reading the bible.

      The teenagers have expressed their thankfulness to God for the messages from TFH and the fact that TFH has helped their families prosper.


       

      Seeing a young person grow into an authentic and passionate relationship with the God who created them is exciting. After fellowship, the parents came to visit and enjoyed with their kids.  They asked to organize this fellowship every school holiday because it is an excellent opportunity for them as they will gain a strong knowledge of biblical truth through the bible, and they hope that it will impact their children.

      It has been a blessing to support this fellowship.  We thank God for what he has done for us.

      It is fo, and without a doubt, we will never know our impact until the other side of eternity.

       Be blessed!

       

                                                                       

                                                          TWISUNGANE Group


      Photo of Twisungane members (Samuel on the right side, Richard, Donat, Celestin, Diane, Claudine, and Epiphanie)

      Introduction

      The Twisungane farmer's group has been doing well.  They are still waiting for buyers; one client wanted to buy it for $2500 but refused to resell it because the longer they wait, the more money they will get.  Now they want to resell it for between $3000 and $3500.  The place is good, has a good view facing Kigali city and is very promising.  At the same time, they are asking for other places they can buy once they sell this one.

      This month, an older man called Donat asked me for advice and information about Duck farming.  I encouraged him to start that small project, and I gave him some info, and then he decided to begin; he was able to purchase 4 Ducks, three females, and one male.  Duck farming is like other domestic poultry birds, such as chickens.  Ducks are raised for meat and egg production purposes.  Duck meat is being consumed as an alternative to chicken meat.


      The mature one cost around 12$, the others were 7$.  Ducklings grow at a faster rate compared to other domestic birds, and they occupy less space.

      There are many breeds, but he chose Muscovy ducks because they are Rwanda's most widely available duck breed.  Males can weigh 7 kg.  at maturity, while females weigh 3 kg at maturity.  They take 35 days to hatch their eggs.


      Th Ducks are hardier birds than chickens and quickly adapt to adverse climatic conditions.  And can survive even without vaccination.  The free-range system is suitable for ducks.

      They love to eat kitchen wastes like vegetables and rice and nutritious feed like corn and grains, which increase the egg size and production size; they do not need to be always provided with commercial feed.  It is cost-effective as farmers do not spend much on feed like other animals.  Daily care and management are less than any poultry birds; they do not require a lot of supervision.

      It is a good initiative; Diane encouraged others to start with a few, and then they will gain a profit.


      http://www.toolsforhope.org/

      Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
      Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 
               

      Donations via AffiniPay


      August 2023, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

      TWISUNGANE Group


      Left to Right (back row children with Diane); Celestin, Diane, Samuel, Epiphanie, and Richard. (July 2023)


      Twisungane Group in August 2017 with TFH employee Deo in the foreground.  Notice improvements in the children's apparent health and dress.  The Twisungane group has doubled in size and more than quadrupled in income since then.

      Introduction

      The Twisungane farmer's group has been doing well.  And they appreciated how TFH helped their children to gain a strong knowledge of biblical truth through bible study and sharing with others.

      Children's Fellowship in Twisungane

      We thank God for this holiday children's fellowship that we have organized.  It went great, and Diane got just what she expected.  The main goal of this fellowship is to help kids develop strong friendships with others so that they can grow spiritually together while engaging in many activities that are wholesome and pleasing to God.  The children were of various ages, but Diane separated them based on age.


      The children shared tea and snacks.

      Children from 12 to 18 years old learn together, and Diane engaged them in bible study; we read different scriptures Genesis 19:11-25, Romans 1:18, 27, 1 Corinthian 6:9-10, and Romans 6:23

      The main goal of this bible study was

      •   To see how God hates sins, predominantly homosexual sin
      •   The reward of sins and the gift of God
      •  To discuss the way forward to avoid this sin.

      They played different games like football.


      After playing, we shared a meal.

      Way forward

      This month Diane started her Children’s Fellowship groups with the Twisungane, and next month she will work with the Dufatanye group.  It is a step we have been taking because the word of God is an incorruptible beginning for them now that they are young.  In the future, they will grasp what we taught them, and Diane wants to see them growing through prayer, Bible reading, and managing different life challenges.

      From the Canadian Medical Association Journal at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3168654/

      “Rwanda appears to be stemming the tide of the HIV/AIDS epidemic as health experts report that the HIV prevalence rate in this small East African nation has fallen below 3% from a staggering 13% in the 1990s.

      The country has “dramatically” reduced the burden of HIV/AIDS by scaling up education and awareness programs, prevention activities, and access to treatment, says Dr. Placidie Mugwaneza, head of HIV prevention at TRAC Plus, the nation’s center for infectious disease control….”

      (HIV infection rate in the USA is ~ 0.3% vs. Rwanda’s ~3% rate) see https://www.verywellhealth.com/hiv-statistics-5088304


      Testimonies

      Amina

      I am 14 years old, a child of Samuel; I thank TFH for organizing the children fellowship in holiday.  It was an opportunity to me because I learnt a lot about Sin, we have read different scripture related to it and I knew that sexually immoral, men who have sex with men will not inherit the kingdom of God.  I had desire to share this with my friends for them to be aware of it.                

           


      My names is Hosea, I am 15 years old, I was delighted to be part of the children fellowship in holiday, where I met and connected with other children, sharing drinks, snacks and meals I enjoyed playing football and before this fellowship I was unaware of the effect of homosexual sin but now I understand that the wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. I learn this through bible which is good.  I would ask TFH to buy bible for us.


      Dorcass

      I was happy to attend this children fellowship which was organized by TFH.  I learnt a lot, I connected with others and sharing different things.  We did a bible study in a group, and I got opportunity to be discipled in God’s word and after bible study I got saved.  And I would ask TFH to prepare this fellowship in every holiday.                                    



      DUFATANYE GROUP


      Dufatanye members 

      Introduction

      Dufatanye group is doing excellent as well.  This month, Egidia's pig gave birth to six piglets.

      While another lady lost her pig unexpectedly, she went to sleep in the evening, and when she got up in the morning, she found her pig dead in the shed.  We called the veterinarian, and he did an exam but found no cause.  The veterinarian decided to slaughter it, and the lady sold the meat and purchased another smaller pig than she had.  She made the decision herself to buy another, and we hope that it will grow quickly.


      Diane with Egidia       

               

      Egidia's pig gave birth to six piglets that are growing quickly.           

         

      Diane with the lady who lost her pig

      The Way Forward

      In August, we will organize their Children's Fellowship group, which will take place around their home.  Keep praying for us.  We hope they will find the work of God.

       Be blessed.


      http://www.toolsforhope.org/

      Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
      Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 

               

      Donations via AffiniPay



      JULY 2023, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

       

                                           DUFATANYE GROUP


      Introduction

      We are delighted to share that Dufatanye Group continues to excel in its endeavors, including its pig farming project.  We have received exciting news about two group members, a man (Bernard), and a woman (Dativa), who have new piglets.

      The lady member of the group has been blessed with six healthy piglets, while the gentleman has welcomed seven additions to his farm.  This news brings us happiness as it signifies not only the financial growth of the group but also the well-being and prosperity of the pigs and their offspring.

      We are grateful for this success and attribute it to God's support and guidance.  The photo below highlights the thriving environment in which these pigs are raised, emphasizing their good health and promising future.

      As we continue this path, we remain committed to fostering sustainable agricultural practices within the Dufatanye Group.  The progress made in our pig farming project is a testament to their dedication and hard work.

      We extend our heartfelt appreciation to all involved in making this achievement possible.  Together, we will continue to strive for excellence and create opportunities for growth within their community.

       

      Photo of Dativa and Bernard


       

      Pig and piglets for Bernard.  He got seven piglets that are healthy and growing quickly.


       Dativa was happy and got six piglets.

      In addition to their pig farming,  they produced a reasonable production of beans.

      They appreciated and thanked TFH for their support; they started counting profits and hoped this project would help them change their lives.  I will follow up and pray for the Dufatanye group to see the sustainability of this project.

      The Way Forward

      Dufatanye group members continued to repay the loan at a reasonable level.  Keep praying for them; we will continue to see the project's sustainability.

       Be blessed.

                                                                        

                                                          TWISUNGANE Group

       

      Right to left; Celestin, Diane Samuel, Epiphanie and Richard

      Introduction

      The Twisungane farmer's group has experienced remarkable success in their agricultural endeavors.  We are grateful to God for His provision and the fruitful outcomes they have achieved.

      When comparing the agricultural seasons A and B, it is evident that bean production has shown significant growth. This can be attributed to the strategic decision to cultivate beans on solid ground, which yielded favorable results. Unlike maize production, which faced challenges due to flooding and the cultivation of maize in marshland, the farmers' choice to grow beans on solid ground proved wise.

      By adapting their farming techniques and considering the impact of environmental factors, the Twisungane farmer's group has been able to maximize their bean production while mitigating potential risks. This demonstrates their resilience and ability to make informed decisions for optimal outcomes.

      We applaud the Twisungane farmer's group for their dedication, resourcefulness, and commitment to sustainable farming practices. Their success inspires them within their community and in showcasing how proper planning and adaptation can lead to positive results in agriculture.

      Each farmer in the group produced a good yield of at least 100 kg of beans, and we hope it will help them with their family until the following season.

       

       

      The child of Donat (one of the members of Twisungane) helps him to harvest beans.


      After harvesting farmers often hang the bean strands outside their homes so the pods dry even further. After the beans are completely dried, then they are ready for “threshing.”


      http://www.toolsforhope.org/

      Thank you for your continued support of Rwandan subsistence farmers.
      Please send this newsletter along to anyone you feel may benefit from it. 



      June 2023, Tools for Hope, Inc. Newsletter

      TWISUNGANE GROUP

      Implementing the project of Purchasing a land

       

      We were at the house of the seller.

      Left to right; Claude in a green t-shirt, Claudine, Celestin, Bernadette, Ramura, Diane, Samuel, Idrisa, and Donat.

      Introduction

      Twisungane farmers group has been doing well and is grateful to Tools for Hope for giving them funds to purchase land.  They believe that this project will be successful and that it will improve their lives.  We visited various plots in their area and chose one field in a good location.  It is about 500 meters from their church.

       


      These are photos of the land we purchased.

      The land purchase agreement is made between Idrisa, and his wife, Bernadette, with the Twisungane group.  The land has UPL number 5/07/09/02/354, which means Unique Parcel Identifier number This code represents the province, district, sector, and cell of where the land is located. 

      The land is 513 m2.  The length is 27 m, and the width is 19 m.  We paid the seller 2000,000 Rfw ($2000), payable in cash.



      Pictures of both parties, seller, and purchaser, in discussing, writing, and signing a land purchase agreement.

      We made the purchase when the Executive Secretary of the Kanzenze cell, where the land and Twisungane are located, gave his approval as a witness in front of all Twisungane groups and other witnesses from the seller's side.

       

      New Addition to the Twisungane Group

      As we mentioned in a previous report, Diane visited Samuel, and below is a photo of Samuel and his wife with a newborn child.

       

      Below is the land purchase letter of agreement with details.