Since the countrywide genocide in 1994, in which deaths were estimated to be as high as 20 percent of the population, Rwanda has been in the process of rebuilding itself economically, socially and spiritually. Though the country has made some remarkable advances in the intervening years, 44.9 percent of Rwandans live below the poverty line. Microfinance remains an essential part of the solution to end Rwanda’s crushing poverty.
Opportunity Rwanda, headquartered in Kigali, launched in 2007, and was recently named a top-running bank by the National Bank of Rwanda. The bank operates branches in all five of Rwanda’s administrative regions. Opportunity Rwanda has achieved steady growth in every outreach area, living up to its name, Banki ya Bose, or Bank for All.
Women: In Rwanda, women currently outnumber men and are playing a major role in the growing economy. In fact, Rwanda’s parliament is the only one in the world dominated by women. Laws have been passed protecting women’s rights to their own assets, and government leaders are vocal in their support of women-owned businesses as a solution to poverty. Opportunity Rwanda has long championed the empowerment of women, who comprise more than 93 percent of our clients and 55 percent of our staff.
Rural Expansion: Opportunity Rwanda launched its newest branch in Ngoma, a rural district in the Eastern Province. With an additional branch opening in Huye and the opening of satellite branches in Rukomo, Nyagatare, Kirehe, Ngororero and Gisagara, the bank is now reaching the most impoverished people through 44 branches.
Transformational Training: In addition to financial inclusion with a broad range of customized products and services, the bank delivers life-changing information through its Holistic Life Improvement modules. These 60 modules cover three broad subjects, including business management, household finance and health management.
Additional Services Offered
- Business loans: Trust Group, Solidarity Group, individual and SME (small/ medium enterprise)
- Education Finance: school proprietor (2013 launch) and student school fee loans
- Agricultural Finance: loans and targeted farmer training
- Savings: Group, personal savings, term deposits, transactional, children’s savings accounts
- Insurance: credit life, funeral policies grew from 30,000 to 150,000 in 2012
- Newly designed and ready to launch: home improvement loans, emergency loans, secondary student loans and premier life insurance
- Cell phone banking and money transfers