The Huguka Mubumbyi cooperative in Ngororero district in Rwanda’s Western Province, consists of 19 girls and 6 boys who are united by their vision to lift themselves out of poverty. Now, the cooperative is well known as a result of the production of improved cookstoves (called Canarumwe); skills they acquired through OYE project technical training.
Recently, the sales of cookstoves the cooperative produces, declined. Most of the cooperative's members rely on income from this business, so something had to be done quickly to generate more customers. The cooperative sought out the OYE project for advice on how to grow their businesses. With SNV’s guidance, they approached the Ngororero district government, to ask for their help to find investors. Soon after their meeting, the district government notified the cooperative that two NGO’s, Fonerwa and Caritas, were looking to place a large order of locally produced cookstoves.
To gain the order, the cooperative had to submit a proposal for a tender to convince both NGOs that they would be able to produce a sufficient number of high quality cookstoves. Their proposal was successful and Huguka Mubumbyi won the tender! They signed a contract with Caritas to make and install 13,446 Cookstoves. During the first phase they are required to produce and install 800 cookstoves that will generate 2 Million Rwandan Francs (approx. €2,000).
Picture of cooperative members with several dignitary visitors
Their latest business success has rejuvenated cooperative’s spirit.
The cooperative’s members acknowledge that without SNV’s assistance, they would have continued to struggle financially. Now, they feel secure in knowing that the OYE team is always there to help with counsel if they need it.
“For a while we had a scarcity of clients, but we didn’t want to give up. We realised that selling individual cookstoves, was not generating enough profit, therefore we started to look for ways how we could sell cookstoves in bulk. After a productive meeting with OYE staff, we agreed to contact the district government, with the intention to attract potential business opportunities. Since we had little knowledge on how to create a business proposal, we are very grateful that OYE talked us through the steps and the outcome has been positive” Philip Nizeyimana, president of the Huguka Mubumbyi cooperative tells us.
Everyone in the cooperative is excited now and working hard to ensure that they deliver all cookstoves on time. The production unit is filled with stoves!