Continuing our series of articles from our Annual Report 2021/22, we outline here our work on our GAERG Investment Fund.
Groupe des Anciens Etudiants et Elèves Rescapés du Genocide (GAERG), an organisation founded by Rwandan Graduate Genocide survivors, runs an Investment Trust Fund, dubbed G-Innovation Development Fund (GIDF), with RWF 50 million (around £50,000) initial capital raised from SURF.
The Fund is a pool of investments aimed at assisting young survivors and the youth to create and grow their businesses. The Fund invests in businesses at various stages, including seed stage, late stage and early stage. It considers financing either for the expansion of small to medium businesses or for small start-ups from across Rwanda.
Applicants benefit from capacity building before being given the capital to start their own businesses. The Fund is open-ended, meaning it is willing to attract investments from anyone. It has an independent board of trustees appointed by GAERG and is made up of six people who have diverse experience in finance and business, law and youth related issues.
The Fund largely seeks to create employment opportunities for young survivors and other youth groups, as currently, more than 60 per cent of the organisation’s 4,500 members are unemployed.