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Bringing the heritage of Hauge to Kenya

More than 60 percent of the population in Nairobi live in the slums.

The vast majority is Christian, and many pray to God for help to climb out of poverty. Or they believe in fate – this is what my life turned out to be, and they settle.

However, we believe that when God gave you a talent to manage business operations, you have an obligation to work hard to be able to raise money.

With this mindset Noracta has engaged a management team of seven pastors in the slums of Nairobi to spread the message that the poor must utilize their own talent given by God. With the help of these pastors Noracta organizes Hauge conferences in the slums so that more people can learn and then teach others.

Through this training the legacy and values of Hans Nilsen Hauge is being passed on to today’s Kenya.

The owner of the Butchery, (the picture below) Alois Were Anyango is not in doubt: “I used to believe that my life was ruled by God”. Now I understand that I have to work hard myself to feed my family.”

Savings Groups

Noracta has an idea that no one is too poor to save. Some may object and say they are. But our thought is that if you manage to save a few shillings per week you will in time have equity that can open new opportunities. There is also another important factor in saving. If you, from the little you have, successfully put aside some small money, you are demonstrating an ability to take control of your own economy. In order to encourage savings and thus help forward better financial planning, we are organizing savings groups in the churches. This helps to provide an opportunity for microfinance and loans and the start up of their own businesses.

Microfinance and startup grants.

We give small loans as a means of promoting economic development and mobilization of savings so that more people may eventually get small loans. After about four years we have now reached the point where more people are developing their business ideas just like Hans Nielsen Hauge developed his network of small businesses. This is a demanding process and we are trying to find good models for success. We have courses in developing business plans and have initially started 14 small businesses. We have further identified 120 leaders in the small fellowships, with whom we hope to be able to continue. The following business types are now in the melting pot: primary schools, nurseries / horticulture, meat shop, sale of phone time and funds transfer, manufacture of food products, sales cooperation, tea and coffee, coffee shops, tailor and welding shop.

The environments in the slums are so difficult to the poorest that it is difficult to succeed through regular microfinance. Experience shows that if an initial grant in connection with the first loan is given, then the conditions are better for a commercial sustainable business.

We place great emphasis on promoting business ethics as Hans Nielsen Hauge demonstrated. It is well received and is absolutely necessary as a counterweight to the corruption that characterizes the slums. Therefore, we focus on knowing all whom we support, well on before hand before getting any kind of support.. We emphasize frugal lifestyle and are working on developing the talents of our friends.