This case study describes the transformation of coffee cooperative COCAMU from being a donor driven association to a business oriented cooperative. COCAMU’s mission is to contribute to a positive change in the livelihoods of its members through the improvement of quality and quantity of the coffee production, and accessing better markets. SNV Rwanda has been providing capacity development services, with the aim of strengthening the organisational and institutional capacities of COCAMU in the coffee industry.
A capability statement concerning our work on Agriculture in Africa which focuses on equity and growth for smallholders.
This study deals with the scope of the National Domestic Biogas Programme (NDBP) in Rwanda, and more specifically serves as a reliable database on energy needs of rural integrated farming households. A survey was used to thoroughly assess individual households’ situation regarding energy, sanitation, health, environmental protection and agriculture, and income generation. 96.5% of surveyed households practiced subsistence or small scale market agriculture, and 99% of those used firewood for cooking fuel. However, 89% would use energy generated from animal and toilet waste for cooking and lighting, and bio-slurry as a fertiliser. Based on the survey results specific challenges and issues needing further attention were identified. NDBP activities included the introduction of biogas lamps in the programme and promotional campaigns at district level involving local authorities.
As for the selection criteria for potential implementation areas, it is important that the cattle keeping system is not the only indicator for the local biogas market potential, as even under zero grazing conditions the available biomass could be insufficient for a satisfying biogas production. For subsidies and micro-finance scheme, the efficient use of animal urine as mixing agent was said to play a key role to save water, together with rainwater harvesting. Further, a key priority for NDBP was to closely monitor the carbon credit market as it constantly develops and brings new opportunities. The rationale behind recommendations as well as detailed survey findings and future steps required can be found in the report.
Beekeeping has been carried out across many generations in Rwanda and plays a critical role in the livelihoods of the rural communities, although it has long remained traditional and of subsistence in nature. This is changing as beekeeping is increasingly taken up as a business enterprise; access to finance is however a key challenge for small entrepreneurs. SNV therefore initiated a Value Chain Financing Study (VCF) assessing the financial needs of current and potential beekeeping entrepreneurs, available opportunities from financial and other institutions, and identifying existing gaps hindering beekeeping entrepreneurs from accessing available financial services. The study also identified several best practices for adoption by SNV and other stakeholders towards enhancing the performance of the sub-sector in a sustainable way.
In June 2010 SNV, together with IFAD, organised a conference on ‘brokering knowledge for upscaling best practices in Inclusive Markets Access in East & Southern Africa’, which brought together over 70 participants from 11 African countries from donor, public and private sector to share experiences. This report summarizes the main issues discussed during the conference, of which the main focus was seeking to bring about systemic change for larger-scale sustainable inclusive markets with a wider significance.
This annual report provides more detail of the strategic position choices SNV made in East and Southern Africa in 2007 and illustrates our approach with case studies from our practice.
Energy in Africa capability statement
Report on the feasibility study for a biogas support programme
in the Republic of Rwanda (2005).
This study evaluates the feasibility of setting-up and implementing a National Biogas Programme in Rwanda (desk study, field visits, discussions, etc.).
Study findings indicated that rural households depended for more than 90% on fuel wood to meet their daily energy needs, and that it has become increasingly difficult to satisfy this demand due to the increasing population and strict legislation for reducing fuel wood consumption. The conditions for dissemination of biodigesters as found by the study are on a technological (e.g. water availability; zerograzing; daily temperatures of over 20 0C), economic (e.g. scarcity of traditional cooking fuel, fuel wood and charcoal; dairy farming as the main source of income; access to credit; use of organic fertiliser), social (e.g. role of women in domestic decision-making, livestock keeping and participation in training programmes), and institutional level (e.g. political will of the Government to support the programme; existence of farmers associations; accessibility of farmers through Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs). From all factors mentioned, it has been suggested that access to credit for farmers is the only condition that was not present at all in the country, for which a finance mechanism providing credit under
reasonable conditions needed to be immediately established.
The report presents a comprehensive analysis of all factors needed to establish and implement the programme, as well as thorough recommendations as to how to improve the weak areas (e.g. technology, commercialization, integrated farming are only some of the areas for which references are provided).
This short report presents a case study on financing clean energy in Rwanda. The Netherlands Development Organisation (SNV) and the ministry of Rwanda have set up a National Domestic Biogas Programme (NDBP) with clear objectives of developing a commercially viable and market oriented Rwandan biogas sector; building 15,000 family sized, quality biogas plants by the end of 2011 (first phase of 4 years). SNV has developed expertise in supporting setting up biogas sectors in various countries. The integrated advisory services given by SNV to NDBP include close support to the programme for its set up and developing various tools needed for strengthening the programme activities. Among others, financial systems’ support plays a vital role in the development of the programme and grants to small farmers an easy access to sufficient initial capital they need to acquire a biogas system. This report presents amongst others an overview of financing of domestic biogas plants in Rwanda, development of a loan product, cash flow estimation per household, a summary of the role of SNV in developing Rwandan (microfinance) biogas product, steps forward, and lessons learnt.
This country paper on Rwanda presents the manner in which financial aspects to help farmers get access to biogas technology were taken in consideration by developing a microfinance loan product. The study describes an investment subsidy, a carbon rebate, and a bank loan as the main mechanisms used to finance the biogas plants, where Banque Populaire du Rwanda was the main financial institution.
A comprehensive SWOT analysis of the current financial instruments is presented in this study (interviews, observations, and a desk study were conducted). It revealed that some of the main benefits were the motivation farmers got to invest in biogas (investment subsidy), ensured payment to the programme (carbon rebate), and low interest rates (bank loan). Among others, the main investment subsidy weakness was its fixed amount. Some of the drawbacks of the bank loan were the repayment risk associated, and for the carbon rebate that it was not easily understood. The opportunities associated with the both the subsidy and the bank loan included the ability to adjust the terms according to individual needs, and with the carbon rebates-investment from big companies. Threats existed as well: the real possibility for the subsidy to be lowered after the first phase, the methodology used for the carbon rebate was becoming obsolete, and for bank loans - that they relied on subsidised sources of finance in Rwanda.
Based on the SWOT analysis, thorough recommendations as to the next step in the biogas programme in Rwanda are presented.
This practice brief shares SNV's experiences in supporting pastoralists in Africa to improve their livelihoods. It bringstogether a wide variety of cases from across the continent that draw out a number of commonalities in pastoralist practices, for instance their management of water resources in Tanzania and Niger. But it highlights as well the diversity of the contexts within which pastoralism operates, as seen in the contrasting scales of dairy processing in Kenya, Niger and Burkina Faso, or the different roles played by local brokers in the livestock markets of Southern Sudan and Benin. Working with pastoralists has taught us that they are not the traditionalists they are often depicted to be. They are adapting to rapid change as much as any other group in Africa. This Practice Brief highlights a variety of adaptation strategies, commercialisation options and institutional arrangements that are currently in use. These diverse experiences demonstrate that SNV support has helped bring about tangible improvements in pastoralist livelihoods, whilst increasing their contribution to economic development in some of the most challenging environments in Africa today.