HCU recognizes that a child's welfare is dependent on their home life as much as the education, so we started the Uplift program to support the households and businesses of Gulu. For the past 2 years, Uplift has been providing loans and financial training to 800 women, empowering them to achieve their small business goals and financial stability at home. These loans are returned with a small interest, which moves HCU closer to self-sustainability, our ultimate goal.
As HCU beneficiaries entered their teens, we noticed a decline in engagement in vocational programs- a common trend for students in Uganda. This often occurs because the youths must assume more responsibilities at home, some even starting families of their own. We want to provide households with the financial stability to allow their children to stay engaged in school through adolescence and achieve higher levels of education.
Project Uplift encourages self-intervention at a community level through group-loans and training to foster responsible financial planning and positive business outcomes. A small interest rate attached to the micro-loans allows sustainable growth for maximum impact: so far we have had 100% return rate on loans and the interest gathered has allowed the program to increase by 72% per year.
By empowering community members to achieve both financial stability for their families and positive outcomes for their business endeavors, we are creating role models for healthy households and successful entrepreneurship: two key catalysts for a grassroots economic revolution which will uplift communities from poverty.
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