Innocent: "Our lives changed after entering the FXBVillage program"
Innocent and his wife have seven children, four of whom are in secondary school and three who are not yet of age to start school. They live in the Muhanga district, slightly west of the capital Kigali.
Innocent, 44, wanted to share his story about the changes he and his family have experienced since joining the FXBVillage programme in Rwanda.
“Before joining the FXBVillage community development program, I lived in extreme poverty, I ate once a day, if at all. I worked for our neighbors to earn at least 1,000 francs which allowed me to buy food. When there was no work, we were unable to feed our children, who had to go all day and all night without eating anything.
My wife took care of them, especially the twins, who were too young to go to school. Sometimes, our older children refused to go to school because they were too hungry, didn’t have the right school material and uniforms. When they fell ill, we also had great difficulty getting them treated and taken care of.
After being selected as a participant in the FXB Village, our lives changed. The organization provided us with nutritional support, school material and uniforms for the children, in addition to helping us registering with a health insurance company. All of this allowed us to focus on developing our ‘income-generating activity’, which we were able to create with the seed capital provided by FXB.
Today, we are dedicated to pig farming. Our sow has even given birth twice: the first time she had 7 piglets, which we sold for 84,000 francs, and the second time she had 8 piglets, which we decided to keep. After we acquired some manure, we also started to grow basic crops, which allows us to limit our purchases. We also have a banana plantation.
We now eat three times a day and can also contribute to our community group’s savings. Today, we’re able to save at least 1,500 francs every single week.
The equipment received and the training sessions given by the FXB team in the nutritional, medical, economic and hygienic fields helped us a lot. Especially in these difficult moments caused by the COVID-19 epidemic.
Today, all Rwandans must stay at home and respect the rules of hygiene, especially regular hand-washing. This is not easy, especially for people living in the countryside. We, on the other hand, are now used to doing it. We understand and respect the recommendations of the authorities in the fight against COVID-19.
The savings we have built up will also help us if the crisis continues. Growing bananas, vegetables and other fruits is currently helping us to find money to meet our needs.
I thank the FXB program for helping us get our lives back on track.”
You can read all about FXB’s activities in Rwanda here.