The Rweinyaga Catholic Women Development Organisation

The Rweinyaga Catholic Women Development Organisation (RCWDO) is a Women’s Self-Help Group in the Mwizi Sub-County of the Mbarara District in Uganda. The main income for 90% of the population is from agriculture, which is dominated by the small-scale growth of food crops and the keeping of livestock by individual households. The average household income in Mwizi is £10 a month for the average family size of 6-8 (Afrinspire, 2013)

Women's Self-Help Groups increase the ability of women to avoid poverty and are seen as one way to empower women. Groups provide a supportive environment where women can share problems, gain skills and begin saving schemes as well as income generating activities. Such groups are an efficient and effective means of achieving development outcomes as they are implemented by the community concerned. Participants benefit economically and develop transferrable skills and knowledge which they pass onto their families and other community members.

RCWDO recognises this and undertakes in savings and credit activities, each member saves an average of £1 a month which can be withdrawn at a later date. Loans are available for the purposes of individual income generating activities, for example farming inputs as well as other household expenses. The group has also taken the initiative of starting group income generating projects including: candle making and tie and dye.