EMPOWER THEM,SAVE LIVES PROJECT

EMPOWER THEM,SAVE LIVES PROJECT

Rwanda
Organization type: 
nonprofit/ngo/citizen sector
Project Stage:
Growth
Budget: 
< $1,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

We want to bring a new way of breaking HIV/AIDS cycle by empowering sex workers; a group whose HIV/AIDS rate is the highest; through joining them in cooperative for multiple small income generating activities.
According the pilot project carried out by MEDSAR, we had realized that one income generating activity could not attract the majority of sex workers. The reason why we are initiating the new approach of reducing prostitution by empowering sex workers with many opportunities of small income generating activities. By Empowering at the same time members as individuals and members as cooperative for long lasting sustainability.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Female sex workers around the campus are economically poor and this poverty is general to their counterparts in different regions of the country where according to Syfia grand lacs Magazine ,interviewed sex workers at Gisenyi (Western region of Rwanda) where one of them reported : “ I'd rather die alone HIV / AIDS. If I do not prostitution, both my children and my three brothers and sisters will die of hunger "explains lucidly, The young 18 year old woman, mother of two children infected by AIDS, They are desperate to earn enough to feed their work without including condoms. They say they earn more than three times, or FRW 3000 (5 Euros) the pass instead of RWF 1000, and On September 23, 2009, The Rwanda minister of gender and family promotion sounded the warning, while presiding over the live radio-television talk show, discussing causes of prostitution in the country and finding solutions to the problem , She called on local leaders, police and other security agents to crack down the culprits but urged all Rwandans to cooperate in the fight against the immoral behaviors. The causes for prostitution in Rwanda as discussed during the talk show are linked to poverty and ignorance plus unfaithfulness amongst the married couples. we realized that only 10% of sex workers around the campus joined the association as broadcasted by the national university’s radio station (Radio salus) on 20th may 2011 news. And even some of members of the association are disjoining the cooperative with time, This is the fact that the demographic trend of prostitution is increasing.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

we had started an approach of uniting sex workers around the campus where we successfully joined 60 members in a cooperative called “ABIYEMEJEGUHINDUKA” means “who are willing to change” However, we had realized that only 10% of sex workers joined the cooperative as broadcasted by the National University’s radio station (Radio Salus) on 20th may 2011 news. And even some members are disjoining the cooperative with time, for the `reason that both who didn’t join and who are disjoining were not comfortable with weaving activity. The reason why we are initiating the new approach of reducing prostitution by empowering sex workers with many opportunities of small income generating activities The contribution to the field is to reduce prostitution around the campus by empowering prostitutes to raise income by themselves, hence reducing the new cases of HIV infection by breaking the HIV cycle (sex seller-sex buyer- partner of the sex buyer). The production from their own activities specifically farming and livestock will benefit them to get a balance diet which is the shortage affect more those who are on ARV treatments and children. The society on the field will benefit from the production of their activities both materially like weaved baskets, food, and by services like hair dressing, pedicure-manicure, dancing club in social events instead of creating social and economical problems which may result from prostitution.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Our primary activities include the financial, Technical and educational support for behavior change in sex workers. Those activities include: 1.-handcrafts: weaving baskets, domestic bags to compensate rubber bag which are no longer in use in Rwanda due to their pollution thus saving the climate. 2. FARMING AND ANIMAL REARING: A. Farming: grow crops that can make more cash while also being used for food security (kitchen gardens by growing fast growing culture like mushroom, legumes, as well as fruits and high nutritious soybean, ) B: animal rearing : hens(egg production), rabbits, pigs, and at least 2 cows(for milk) for the association to provide them with basic nutrients at same time with compost from livestock the agricultural production will be enhanced. 3. Hair dressing, manicure and pedicure, tailoring of fashion clothes. 4. Painting (Rwanda as fast developing country with more modern construction countrywide, this activity will help to raise more income) 5. Baking (making advocacy for market their bread to the University community where there are many consumers with 10,000 students ). 6. Decoration, dancing club ( we shall cooperate with local leaders ,private sector and NGOs working in Rwanda to employ them in public ceremonies and alike activities)
Sustainability

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

Female sex workers around the campus are economically poor and this poverty is general to their counterparts in different regions of the country where according to Syfia grand lacs Magazine ,interviewed sex workers at Gisenyi (Western region of Rwanda) where one of them reported : “ I'd rather die alone HIV / AIDS. If I do not prostitution, both my children and my three brothers and sisters will die of hunger "explains lucidly, The young 18 year old woman, mother of two children infected by AIDS, They are desperate to earn enough to feed their work without including condoms. They say they earn more than three times, or FRW 3000 (5 Euros) the pass instead of RWF 1000, and On September 23, 2009, The Rwanda minister of gender and family promotion sounded the warning, while presiding over the live radio-television talk show, discussing causes of prostitution in the country and finding solutions to the problem , She called on local leaders, police and other security agents to crack down the culprits but urged all Rwandans to cooperate in the fight against the immoral behaviors. The causes for prostitution in Rwanda as discussed during the talk show are linked to poverty and ignorance plus unfaithfulness amongst the married couples. we realized that only 10% of sex workers around the campus joined the association as broadcasted by the national university’s radio station (Radio salus) on 20th may 2011 news. And even some of members of the association are disjoining the cooperative with time, This is the fact that the demographic trend of prostitution is increasing.
About You
Organization:
Medical Students' Association of Rwanda
About You
First Name

SEBAZUNGU

Last Name

Theodomir

Twitter
Facebook Profile
About Your Organization
Organization Name

Medical Students' Association of Rwanda

Organization Country

, BU

Country where this project is creating social impact

, BU

How long has your organization been operating?

More than 5 years

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Innovation
What stage is your project in?

Operating for 1‐5 years

Share the story of the founder and what inspired the founder to start this project

The idea of starting the project of uniting sex workers around the campus in association was initiated after that one of students on his way to home from the campus met 2 sex workers, and they call him asking money to have sex with them, after having sex he was infected by HIV, after 2 years, he narrated the story his colleagues(medical students), they came by the idea of uniting those sex workers by helping them to find another way of surviving rather than doing prostitution, through MEDSAR and DANISH YOUTH COUNCIL(DUF), the association ABAYIMEJEGUHINDUKA “who are willing to change” was initiated;
The implementation of the idea has been successful due to the cross-link between University medical students and sex workers;

In fact, We are all youth (sexually active ,mostly unmarried), easy to interact( positively or negatively) and positively influence them ( sex workers and medical Students) moreover we are trained in medical field, their rate of HIV infection is 70% against 3 % general population where we belong, at unfortunately, the fact that those sex workers live around the campus, their clients are mostly university students.

Based on our success, we want to expand the project activities both in services and area of working hence by reaching more sex workers.

Social Impact
Please describe how your project has been successful and how that success is measured

we had started an approach of uniting sex workers by around the campus where we’ve successfully joined 60 members in a cooperative called “ABIYEMEJEGUHINDUKA” means “who are willing to change” with funds from DUF( Danish Youth Council) we helped them to start an income generating activities in which weaving they may raise some money to support them and their families as they were responsible.

Their production is benefiting the society who are buying the basket from them.
By reducing the number of sex sellers, where most of them, according to stastics HIV positive, we believe we had reduced new cases of HIV infection.

How many people have been impacted by your project?

101-1,000

How many people could be impacted by your project in the next three years?

More than 10,000

How will your project evolve over the next three years?

within 3 years we will expand the project in 4 provinces and Kigali city ,of the country .
In first year, We shall be working in the southern province where the main campus of the National University of Rwanda is located.
Second year, we will reach Kigali and Eastern province
Third year, our activities will expand in remaining 2 provinces of Rwanda( northern and western).

Sustainability
What barriers might hinder the success of your project and how do you plan to overcome them?

4 main barriers can hinder the success of this project and the following strategies have been taken to overcome those barriers even before they raise.
1.Return in prostistition at the end of project :Make members of the cooperative economically independent by creating income generating activities.
2.Lack of interest in for some sex workers in a given activity:Create multiple income generating activities
3.Not enough market for their products: Chosen activities respond to the basics needs of surrounding community.
e.g- hair dressing for university students
-their weaved baskets(containers) will be used instead of rubber containers which are no longer in use on Rwandan market due to their pollution
4.Cases of misbehaving amongst adherents due to that they have different backgrounds :Legally recognised association with known internal regulations and discipline committees within the association.
Misuse of income: Set regulations of how to use funds within members and savings on the general account of the association.

Tell us about your partnerships

Different Partners are involved in this project and their role has been highlighted below
Danish Youth Council: Funds to initiate the project
National University of Rwanda :Providing volunteers
Local government: Recognition of the association,Providing some job opportunities(eg: dancers in public ceremonies, painters in publics institutions like schools, hospitals,...)
Private sector:Provide job for sex workers( consumers of the associations products)

Explain your selections

We received funds from DUF( Danish youth council) we helped them to start an income generating activities in which weaving they may raise some money to support them and their families as they were responsible.
we started an approach of uniting sex workers around the campus where we successfully joined 60 members in a cooperative called “ABIYEMEJEGUHINDUKA” means “who are willing to change” However, we had realized that only 10% of sex workers joined the cooperative as broadcasted by the National University’s radio station (Radio Salus) on 20th may 2011 news.
And even some members are disjoining the cooperative with time, for the `reason that both who didn’t join and who are disjoining were not comfortable with weaving activity.
The reason why we are initiating the new approach of reducing prostitution by empowering sex workers with many opportunities of small income generating activities

How do you plan to strengthen your project in the next three years?

With the experience we had, by creating a multi- activities project, we hope to recruit more sex workers to adhere the cooperative. Therefore empowing the cooperative With more (members) human resource, with more potentialities imply more production for them and the society. To achieve this, we will involve ex-sex workers to mobilize current sex workers through testimonial.

within 3 years we will expand the project in 4 provinces and Kigali city ,of the country .
In first year, We shall be working in the southern province where the main campus of the National University of Rwanda is located.
Second year, we will reach Kigali and Eastern province
Third year, our activities will expand in remaining 2 provinces of Rwanda( northern and western).

Challenges
Which barriers to employment does your innovation address?
Please select up to three in order of relevancy to your project.

PRIMARY

Lack of skills/training

SECONDARY

Underemployment

TERTIARY

Lack of visibility and investment

Please describe how your innovation specifically tackles the barriers listed above.

EMPOWER THEM,SAVE LIVES PROJECT tackles the barriers listed above by training sex workers about different activities like weaving, pedicure, manicure,agriculture on small land(kitchen garden), baking,...
Combining the skills from this training and small funds from the Project, ex-sex workers raise income that support them and they family.

Are you trying to scale your organization or initiative?
If yes, please check up to three potential pathways in order of relevancy to you.

PRIMARY

Enhanced existing impact through addition of complementary services

SECONDARY

TERTIARY

Influenced other organizations and institutions through the spread of best practices

Please describe which of your growth activities are current or planned for the immediate future.

we had realized that only 10% of sex workers joined the cooperative as broadcasted by the National University’s radio station (Radio Salus) on 20th may 2011 news.
And even some members are disjoining the cooperative with time, for the `reason that both who didn’t join and who are disjoining were not comfortable with weaving activity.
The reason why we are initiating the new approach of reducing prostitution by empowering sex workers with many opportunities of small income generating activities( weaving,baking,manicure,pedicure,dancing,animal rearing,agriculture on small land, painting,...)
within 3 years we will expand the project in 4 provinces and Kigali city ,of the country .

Do you collaborate with any of the following: (Check all that apply)

Government, NGOs/Nonprofits, Academia/universities.

If yes, how have these collaborations helped your innovation to succeed?

Different Partners are involved for the success of this project and their role has been highlighted below
Danish Youth Council: Funds to initiate the project
National University of Rwanda :Providing volunteers
Local government: Recognition of the association,Providing some job opportunities