The Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Kigali, Nathan Amooti Rusengo, urged Rwandans, especially members of the church, to keep in mind that saving is a culture that should characterize them as it is in the history of Rwanda.
He made the remarks while attending a savings discussion meeting that brought together church leaders among others, organized by Hope International in collaboration with the Anglican Church, Diocese of Kigali, on October 29, 2020.
While Rwanda and the world are celebrating the Savings Week from October 26-31 every year, Bishop Rusengo said Rwandans should return to the culture of saving that characterized the grandparents during the time they were using granaries.
“Saving is a Christian culture and a Rwandan culture,” he said. The Bible says ‘Ants are creatures of little strength, yet they store up their food in the summer (Proverbs 30:25).
“Go back in the Bible on how Abraham, Isaac and Jacob used to save but now there are some people who have jumped to start churches without any savings.” He added
“In Rwandan culture we used to have a granary behind the main house and it was built in such a way that not everyone could access it immediately. That’s what we’re telling people to go back and save for the future,” he emphasized.
Bishop Rusengo said that as the evangelism in Rwanda, especially in the Anglican Church, was started with missionaries donating everything, should not continue in the same way today.
“We are talking about turning a blind eye to external donations, using what we already have and can satisfy ourselves and the future generations, too”, he said.
Mutabazi Erisa, Regional Director of Hope International, called upon the participants to build sustainable economic growth which is not based on external funding, rather through savings.
“Prosperity from outside funding is good but it has its time and its impact as beneficiaries most of the time are not involved, so now a saving culture is a development based on what one has no matter how much. Let’s build our capacity”, he said.
Nibakure Rose, a resident of Gahanga Sector in Kicukiro District, says that saving through saving groups model has helped her in her daily life, since 2013 when she first joined them.
She said: “When I joined, I was a woman with no other job. Today I thank God for my involvement as a woman who is able to pay school fees for my son who is in S6. Saving and credit groups are the strength of the family”.
Why most people fail to save money?
When it comes to saving money certain people are better at the task than others. Some individuals have a great understanding of the need to save money and how to implement strategies to ensure their savings are constantly growing. Other people may try, but often unsuccessfully.
The most common reason people give for not saving money is not having extra money to save. In most cases this is not the fact but an easy excuse for not investing the time, energy and discipline required to find the extra money we all have in our budget, Bishop Rusengo explained.
Participants said they are determined to reduce expenses and increase revenues, noting that “Each day that passes without saving money is a lost opportunity to increase your savings.”