Iringa Hope has been developing village micro-loan funds in the Iringa District of Tanzania since 2007 (right of Mbeya on the country map). In 2010 Iringa Hope entered into a cooperative agreement with the Diocese of Iringa (DIRA) and the University of Iringa (UoI). This agreement provided the foundation for a major expansion of our program.
Currently, the Iringa Hope team is working in 38 villages. 35 villages have established SACCOS and are making loans while 25 have established AMCOS. Collectively our cooperatives are serving over 3,200 families representing over 20,000 people.
In addition to starting cooperatives, we work to provide facilities for our members to work from. Called Integrated Development Centers (IDCs), these compact structures provide office space for the SACCOS and AMCOS, an area for borrowers to meet with the local officials, and a small warehouse for the AMCOS to use. Currently we have constructed 23 IDCs in villages that have formed a SACCOS and an AMCOS.
The results have been dramatic! Higher family income, children able to attend school, less malnutrition and a stronger local economy.
The new office facility in Iringa completed in 2015 has enabled increasing our all-Tanzanian staff.