SYPO gives small business loans to women in rural areas of Uganda. We work in places that are too remote (and therefore too expensive) for other microfinance organizations to serve. To be able to do that, SYPO works with a low cost model; a ‘lean’ organization and smart use of mobile technology. To read more about why microfinance is such a powerful poverty allevition tool, read our article ‘Why microfinance works‘.
SYPO was started in 2003, and focused on supporting entrepreneurial projects in Uganda. To find out more about the History of SYPO, read on the about page.
SYPO believes that gaining access to microfinance services such as business loans will improve the economic resilience, independence and freedom of choice of Ugandan women and their households.
The mission is set “to reach the underserved poor of Uganda, achieving a sustainable impact on their lives through financial services and principles of entrepreneurship, while developing a great team of professionals and sharing results that can advance the work of other organizations”.
SYPO works in the Mukono and Buikwe districts in Central Uganda, and will continue to focus on those two districts in the coming years. The demand for more microcredits in this region is enormous – our assessment shows that in order to serve all the women who need our help most in the region, we need to grow to a portfolio of at least 15,000 microcredits. In order to do this, we started this website to ask you for your help.
SYPO is a non-profit NGO in the Netherlands, with the objective to help poor women in rural Uganda with entrepreneurial projects. For our microfinance project, we started the company SYPO Uganda Ltd. in Uganda. This company is fully owned by the NGO in the Netherlands – any profits it makes need to be reinvested in the project. So why did we start it as a company? The beauty of microfinance is that it doesn’t feel like charity to the people we help. The women get a microcredit, and pay interest while expanding their business. So we didn’t want to make them feel like they’re accepting handouts. We are structured and operate as a company in Uganda, while the social mission is fully protected by the statutes of the shareholder, the Dutch NGO SYPO.
One of the great things about microfinance is that it can be completely self-sustaining. All the costs of the organization in Uganda are covered by interest paid on the microcredits. That’s why we can use 100% of your donation directly to issue microcredits. Even better: since the microcredits are repaid in a year, we can recycle your donation again and again to help more women. To ensure that we can keep doing this, all donations are final–even after a microcredit is repaid, we will not be able to refund your donation.
Some of the text on this website is written by the team in Uganda. English is not their first language, and the photos are taken and uploaded with the team’s phones in field conditions. Please bear with us and assess the meaning, not the form of the texts!
In general we find that the women who apply for microcredits with us know their business well, and better than us. We cannot teach them much about keeping poulty if that’s what their family has been doing for generations. We do however train them in basic financial literacy, and we organize days on which they can share experiences with other women engaged in similar businesses (in the poultry example, women can share what price they get for their eggs, what vaccines work best, which vendors to avoid, etc).
We can work most efficiently in the region we know well. The demand in Central Uganda is still overwhelming, so we have no plans to expand beyond the region we currently work in.
In order to continuously improve our impact and efficiency, SYPO collects extensive data regarding repayment patterns and social impact. You can contact us for any reputable research that can advance the understanding of microfinance.