The Ministry of Local Government has appreciated the contribution of Spark Microgrants in Advancing Citizen Engagement (ACE) project.
The appreciation was voiced by the Minister of State in charge of social affairs in Rwanda’s Ministry of Local Government, Assumpta Ingabire and the Director-General of Local Administrative Entities Development Agency (LODA), Mrs. Claudine Nyinawagaga.
Both officials early this week visited ACE activities in Gatoki Village in Busengo Sector, Gakenke District of Northern Province and Akayenzi Village located in Southern Province, Gisagara district, Kansi Sector.
Minister Ingabire expressed her satisfaction with the Social welfare of residents in both sectors following collaboration of and strong partnership with different stakeholders.
“There has been significant progress in the past five years. The social welfare of residents changed and now the population has access to basic human needs, including food, safe drinking water, and sanitation and health facilities”, she said.
“The Government and its partners work together for the development of villages in remote areas and build communities free of poverty and food insecurity. One such good partners is Spark Microgrants whose work enables different communities to design and implement their social impact projects.”
Ingabire urged the community to take advantage of Spark Microgrants’ support to generate further economic benefits that are key enablers of their village to achieve a significant poverty alleviation and to end school dropout and other development challenges.
Activities of partners like Spark Microgrants contributed to poverty alleviation in Gisagara, where extreme poverty was around 50% in past years, and child stunting at 40% on average.
The Director-General of LODA, Mrs. Claudine Nyinawagaga, noted that the Government works with its decentralized entities and partners for the citizen-centered governance approach whereby socio-economic development initiatives are selected by the village members.
“I believe that this participatory planning process involving citizens from village level will help you to maximize the productivity from Spark Microgrants support and ensure that the selected projects are progressing well,”she told residents in Gatoki village.
The 29 villages of Kansi Sector have been supported by their local government officials (SEDOs) to lead their development through the FCAP training.
Spark Microgrants supported 30 groups of livestock production and farming projects. The four villages of the Sector benefited from the grants of over Rwf 198,058,300 which helped the local community to cover basic development needs.
They invested in livestock including 378 cows, 427 goats and then in transport with 26 motorbikes among others.
The citizen collective savings are used to pay regular Health insurance and to buy basic domestic equipment.