Kikundi cha Mafanikio (KCM) means “Success Group” in Swahili. KCM partners with families to improve children’s health and families’ incomes. They operate a demonstration organic vegetable farm which also provides vegetables to the local kindergarten. Families also manages a loan fund for families to receive small business and home construction loans. To achieve financial self-reliance KCM team members are starting their own small businesses that include transportation, accommodations, sewing and farming.
Team: Jumanne, Yusa, Frank, Asha, and Dixon
Prior to the 1950’s Kindwitwi was wild bush land. In 1957 the government of Tanzania set up a small leprosy hospital in Kindwitwi and forcibly relocated approximately 50 patients to the area. Today’s residents are descendants of those original 50 patients. Unlike many communities in Tanzania where people have learned over hundreds of years how to use the land most effectively, many people in Kindwitwi are still experimenting with how to get the most out of their land. The village has its own kindergarten but primary school students must attend either Nyanda Katundu or Utete Primary Schools in neighboring villages.
Most of the 100 or so families who live in Kindwitwi keep houses in the central village. They also build small huts in nearby farm lands which they will sleep in to protect their crops during the harvest season. Some families fish in the Rufiji River and others depend on annual harvests of rice, corn, sesame, and cassava. KCM is helping families expand and diversity their agricultural activities so they can make more money and eat a more balanced diet.
Yusa Mbonde is the manager of KCM. He was born in the neighboring town of Utunge and moved to Kindwitwi once he was married. He studied until 4th grade at Utete Primary School and then worked as a casual laborer on farms and a security guard for a local guest house. His work ethic and honesty earned him an opportunity to become the manager for KCM. When he is not working he likes spending time with his young children Lashi and Samia and watching Premier League football.
KCM maintains an organic vegetable farm to demonstrate best practices in organic agriculture. They harvest from the farm every school day and send their harvests to the village kindergarten so that the 60 kindergarten students can enjoy nutritious vegetables with their porridge every day.
Families can qualify for livestock and small business loans to improve their income. When a family builds credit and proves they have consistent income they can qualify for home improvement or new home loans. These loans are focused on creating safe, sanitary, and well-lit environments that are conducive to a child’s learning.
Each KCM team member is starting their own small business. These business will support the organization’s community service work so they can become financially self-reliant. They hope that in the future these businesses will also become economic engines, creating employment and bringing additional income to the community.