IMAGINE BURUNDI-TERIMBERE FOUNDATION
Imagine Burundi-Terimbere is a Burundian foundation, which was established in 2012 in order to empower mainly women through education in handcrafts.
The Foundation was established by Gilbert Hakizumukama (Burundi) and Mogens Nygaard Petersen (Denmark), who both have many years of experience from aid- and development work.
Imagine Burundi Terimbere has a commercial approach to poverty reduction. The Mission is to provide the right skills for poor families so they through commerce can establish a future and fight against poverty and gender based violence for the wellbeing of the community and Burundi.
The philosophy of the Foundation is simple but very effective. In short time the Foundation has created hundred small jobs in Cibitoke province and the outskirts of Bujumbura, making crafts, clothes and establishing an off-grid entrepreneurs shop selling quality solar lamp “Little Sun”, which provides free and clean light in the night so families can work and children study.
The main project is Building communityes. Today we Work with poor people at Kamakara City, Commune Rugombo, Cibitoke. We combine aid with social business in cooporation with Danish "Build1City", american PACHA SOAP and SHAPE International.
to provide the right skills for poor families so they trough commerce can establish a future and fight against poverty and gender based violence for the wellbeing of the community and Burundi.
"Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you'll join us
And the world will be as one"
Autumn 2011. Gilbert and Mogens
had visited an ONGEA (Say it loud) group through an ADRA Burundi project working to solve problems with gender-based violence and poverty. The project was evaluated as it drew to the end of the project period. The women had learned to organize themselves and be able to produce great results in their community. But they had a big problem: poverty as they had no way to get an income. After a visit, Gilbert and Mogens evaluated the ONGEA project and the women's statements. In the middle of this conversation a radio was turned on in the restaurant "Banana House" in Cibitoke town, Burundi. The song "Imagine" by ex beatles John Lennon. After the song Mogens said: "Gilbert! Can you imagine how these ONGEA women can achieve success in their lives?” - Gilbert clapped his hands and shouted: “TERIMBERE!” (Go forward).
The women's stories and statements and John Lennon's song thus marked the beginning of the establishment of the Imagine Burundi Terimbere Foundation.
Since autumn 2011, the work has been booming. The fund was set off with the creation of three Imagine groups - former ONGEA – in the villages of Ndava, Kiramira and Cibitoke. The Fund paid teachers to teach groups how to make traditional Burundian baskets, grow peanuts, and produce jewelry and postcards. After a few months of classes, women were ready to produce. The Found buys products at the market prize and provide extra money on top of the prize for loan-saving boxes so that they can develop their own innovative projects on the side.
Since then, the Foundation has
set up similar groups in Bujumbura's suburbs, which produce everything from dresses, Ibitenge, to forks made from the bones of cows. The Foundation used the same approach when it entered a distribution agreement with the company "Little Sun" in Berlin, Germany, to sell quality solar lamps in Burundi. In addition to the Fund's non-profit office-shop Bujumbura, the Fond has created off-grid little Sun shops in Kiramira, Kamakara, Kamenge and Rumonge.
The Foundation has created income for hundreds of Burundians already. And we continue. In 2014 we begun the Work of empowering a community in Kamakara, Cibitoke. This journey continue to grow. Today we have - in cooporation with our partners Build1City, Pacha Soap and Shape International - created a soap factory, a kassava mill, communitycenter, sawing house, haridresser saloon, and a Carpenter house for former childsoldiers. In addition to this we also have build kichengardens, watertanks, clean drinking Water system, bicycle ambulance, and registreted couples WHO dont have a marriage certificate and registrated children with no birth certificate.
All this create jobs, and hopes for poor people. They generate a income, and are able to share income with the Citys account for social aid in the community.
The Burundians are poor, but strong in heart and mind. So all options are open if we can all Imagine Burundi Terimbere.
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