Support to small and medium enterprises (SME)
Medium and small enterprises:-
- We help individual SMEs to improve their management and entrepreneurship skills to manage profitable businesses; without which they cannot repay loans.
- In groups of 15 to 30, we help them to have own managed banking services, save and advance themselves with loan through “VITUO VYA JAMII VYA KUTOA UMASKINI” (VITOVU) or Community Centres for Poverty Eradication (CEPE). As individuals they cannot have the capacity to face formal financial institutions. In VITOVU groups they have managed to walk into these institutions with confidence. All VITOVU centres operate bank accounts with commercial banks. Some VITOVU have invested in buying shares from these banks, thus joining the “stock exchange” market.
Support Women and Youth
As individuals and in groups we empower them economically and socially through “VITUO VYA JAMII VYA KUTOA UMASKINI” (VITOVU) or Community Centres for Poverty Eradication (CEPE). In they choose a common bondage, business or same street/village or as they wish; women groups, youth groups, men alone groups, faith based or mixed groupings so long as they build trust among themselves. Experience has shown us that:-
- Women are the most marginalized and they are the ones who carry the household economic burden most. As such we focus on women to help them balance work and family responsibilities when engaged in self-employment.
- Women have proved to invest their income for their households and especially for their children. If empowered socially and economically they are able to generate, defend and control their own incomes. That way woman can gain power at the households to community level. They can make independent decisions and command more respect to their society. Many become leaders, instigating change in social practices, relationships and can easily mobilize social action.
- Women have proved to use household resources more productively than men and have the best credit ratings.
- Young people are energetic, resourceful, enthusiastic, have drive, initiative, risk taking, zest, ambition, daring, courage’ and so on; as such they have entrepreneurial traits, they need support to excel.
- Focusing to young people creates opportunities to use their talents find personal fulfillment and employ themselves.
One of the clear indicators of a poor person is that they do not own long-term assets. They own small cash in boxes (vibubu) hidden under their beds, they buy and keep chicken and goats as forms of savings. They own risky assets. To help them escape poverty:-
Assets accumulation must be the core and an important anti-poverty strategy.
Ownership of assets such as formal savings, businesses, owns homes, equity shares, can help the poor to invest in themselves and their families and thus achieve economic independence and inter-dependence.
Assets such as human resources, social and environmental capital, as well as financial capital, enables communities to prosper and participate fully in the wider economy and determine their destiny.
Assets building strategies recognize that economic well-being, social justice, and environmental quality are both compatible and interdependent.
Training and Consultancy Services
ASMET offers direct business development training and technical assistance to help low-income individuals, households to start, expand, and strengthen small businesses. ASMET helps associated members, and other organizations to have own resource people by conducting training of trainers (TOT) workshops. VITOVU members undergo a six weeks intensive training in areas of entrepreneurship skills, managing of savings and credit programs before starting issuing loans to members. 2014 Projects includes; 1. Providede Operational Capacity Training on Basic Entrepenurership, Financial and Marketing Mananagement to Community Radio Managers and Board Members from 9 Community Radios from Micheweni - Pemba, Makunduchi - Zanzibar, Kyela. Ifakara, Pangani, Karagwe, Kahama and Sengerema - Mwanza.
2. Translation of VSLA training manuals for PLAN Tanzania from English to Kiswahili .. on going assigment.
VITOVU and VIKOBA Centres as Community Safety Nets
ASMET has proved that formal and organized groups can be a great force for poverty emancipation and platforms for socio-economic empowerment. The basic principle of the VITOVU methodology is that members of the community or group form an association to jointly save money and grow it into a loan revolving fund for development and security purposes.
Support Small and Medium Enterprise Farmers
The fact that agriculture being a backbone of our economy in the next five years ASMET plans to support the rural population especially young people to engage themselves in agriculture production as enterprises rather than subsistence occupation.