Saturday, March 6, 2010

Agric Finance Planning Meeting in London...

During February 22-24, Opportunity International's Agricultural Finance Planning Meeting took place in London.

The meeting was primarily for five African implementing partners, including UOB from Rwanda, to give presentation about their business cases on 1) agricultural finance, 2) rural savings and 3) rural points of delivery. Along with the business case, each implementing partner was to present its funding needs as well.

These funding needs and business cases will be taken into account in making the final decision on distributing the grant funding received from Gates/Master Card Foundations, plus other discretionary funding, over the next four years.

All countries are uniquely different with opportunities and challenges, but in general
Rwanda is perceived to have more challenges than opportunities, primarily because of its small land size and rough terrain. I had to make a business case that will help change the perception and draw attention. It was by God's grace that UOB and Rwandan case drew great response and compliments. Praise the Lord!

We do not know yet how much funding will be allocated to Rwanda, but that is not what I should be concerned about. Howmuchever it may be, now the next challenge is how to materialize it into reality with the maximum impact. Again, I have no choice but go to the Lord on my knees for His grace and guidance.

Overall, the meeting was fruitful. But the journey was grueling because of red eye flights on both ways. I suppose my physical body is waning faster than my heart. - Jeffrey

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