Samuel Ahumuza has an incredible testimony, and his story is one of my personal favorites. He grew up in Uganda, Africa to a large family, and though he didn’t have the same resources or opportunities as an entrepreneur born in America, he still chased his dream of entrepreneurship. Samuel didn’t wait for his dreams to fall right into his lap, he ran after them, all the way to Charis Bible College in Woodland Park, Colorado. I got the pleasure to instruct him during his time at the school, and we are blessed to still be connected today. Read his story below, and remember, the only thing limiting you is your beliefs about what you can achieve.
Start off by telling us a little about yourself!
I was born in a family of 12 siblings to illiterate (by Western standards) but successful business parents in Uganda. At age 14, my dad made me an apartment caretaker, which exposed me to the dynamics of business. I did this for over 10 years.
In 2014, I graduated from Victoria University in Kampala with a BSc in Public Health. The same year, I graduated from Charis Bible College in Uganda.
The next year, I went to Charis Bible College-Colorado for a leadership program. I found out that the classes were at night and recorded, so I switched to the business program. Here, I presented a business plan which was taken on by staff. With the help of different business mentors and fellow classmates, I was able to return to Uganda with an investor ready business plan.
We have since received funding from Tricord Global and the Tony Elumelu Foundation. Our business is incorporated as “The Farm Uganda ltd” with 4 full-time and 2 part-time employees for now. We will be producing maize (corn) and beans to supply boarding schools in Kampala.
What inspired you to be an entrepreneur?
The teaching of seven mountains by Marjorie Broce at Charis Bible college Uganda was an eye-opener. I watched a video of Paul Milligan in 2014, and that stirred the desire to pursue business over Public Health. The dire need in Uganda will push almost anyone to make a difference.
What led you to choose your business idea?
While doing an internship at Reach out Mbuya Uganda in 2014, it became clear that trade, not aid is what is needed in Uganda. We were distributing food, doing free HIV/AIDS testing, counseling and follow-ups. As I visited various homes, I began to wonder what would happen to these clients if the funding was not renewed.
Private Education is one of Uganda’s booming sectors. Most of the schools provide meals, but the food supply is hardly enough. The idea of partnering with local people to produce food on large scale for the ready market was birthed.
What was the biggest challenge you’ve faced? What’s been your greatest success?
The biggest hurdle has been not receiving funding in time.
My biggest success has been receiving start-up capital from Tricord Global and having been mentored by world class business coaches.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into entrepreneurship?
Do your research, get a team and be persistent. Things will likely not work out as you expect. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best.
Dream big but start small.
Above all trust God
Uganda is full of many rewarding investment opportunities. but one has got to triple check the details before a big transaction.
Wasn’t that good? I read this and I am encouraged that no matter what your situation is, or where you come from, God can use you to make a difference in the world. We will not become successful by our own willpower, but by God’s power.
- feel stuck in the daily grind of 9-5, and it seems as though your dreams may be dying. You need inspiration. You need to revive your dreams.
- want to know which of the Seven Mountains you are meant to impact. Where is your sphere of influence? How can you make a difference?
- need to get out of debt, learn to become prosperous, and use your money to make a kingdom impact. You need a plan for your money that involves something bigger than you!
- want to tap into the desires of your heart and discover God’s plan for your life. You feel like there’s more. Now it’s time to find out what.
The annual WealthBuilders Conference is coming up NEXT MONTH! If you have ever wanted to know more about entrepreneurship, business, real estate, or financial freedom, this conference is for you!
TriCord Global is an important part of my brand here at BillyEpperhart.com, and I wanted to update you all on the recent Social Impact Report we received! We strive to make sense of making money for making a difference, so I wanted to show you all the difference we have made together. We couldn’t have done any of this without you, our readers, partners and investors. If you want to learn more about how you can get involved, click here.
First, I wanted to share the good news from Glory SACCO, the credit union we partner with. They are located in Kampala Uganda, and now have 7, full time, paid employees. These employees are also used by the Ugandan government to train other bankers around the country. As you can see, we are making a difference locally and nationally! Since our partnership, Glory Sacco has impacted over 2,000 people. They have given loans to people to buy land for farming and housing, which increases agricultural production and creates jobs. They also do group loans when individuals cannot put up enough capital by themselves. These loans often go to boost local businesses, such as charcoal businesses and local shops. These loans typically amount to $114-147 USD per person, which then helps individuals continue to support their families and send their children to school.
GloTrans is the bank we also operate through. The beginning of the year tends to be financially stressful on businesses, and our loans were able to help.
One of our clients, Pastor Kajubi Raphael got a loan of $2,825 USD. He used it to complete the construction of a bathroom for the school that he runs ministering to the deaf and the blind. He has 25 students and 10 employees.
Another client, Kabenge Gideon, received a loan of $2,825 USD. He used his loan to construct a nursery section and part of a primary section of a school.
Najala Rita used her loan of $2,825 USD for a reforestation project. She employs 5 people.
Kizza Yawe Harry used his loan to boost his spare parts business. With the effects of the loan, he has been able to improve the working conditions of his 3 employees, and send his children to school.
There are so many more stories that you can watch in the video below! I wanted to thank you all again for the contributions you have made to this organization, both prayerfully and financially. Please continue to pray for TriCord and the people that are being impacted in Uganda. It is a privilege to steward the wealth God has given us and use it to make a Kingdom difference in this world! If you are interested in donating or investing, we would love for you to get involved.
By donating, you get to be a part of projects that include digging water wells and starting farms.
By investing, you have the opportunity to promote a sustainable economy in developing nations through micro-finance loans. When someone receives a loan to start a business, the whole community benefits. If this of interest to you, sign up to receive our e-newsletter. We will keep you updated throughout the year on our investment opportunities.
I haven’t gotten to share in a very close-up way what I spend a lot of time working on throughout the year. But many of you know that I am constantly traveling to and from various countries in Africa. Over the past year, I’ve been truly blessed to get to know and invest in the vision of Pastor Herberts. Together, my non-profit Tricord Global and his church-started bank, Glory Bank, are working to transform the nation of Uganda through social impact investing.
The following is a transcription of the interview. One of the things that really sticks out to me here is how different the economic climate of Uganda is compared to the U.S. Here, it’s way too easy to get loans and drown in debt. But over there, it’s actually incredibly difficult to get loans—even though the difficulty means the attitudes are willing to pay back those loans.
The reality is that the church needs to go a step beyond donating to causes. We need to invest in causes! Instead of sending a dollar over there that will disappear, let’s put a dollar in the hands of someone who can reinvest that dollar over and over again. Let’s be sustainable in our social impact.
Pastor Herberts: The Christian churches are trying to empower their own people but they can’t do it because they don’t have resources available in large amounts. And yet they can get that money in a period of time, paying it back little by little.
Billy: So they can afford to borrow it and then pay it back.
Pastor Herberts: Paying back is not a problem. Getting a lump sum of money is a problem. And the moment you don’t have that lump sum of money, you can do nothing. Someone else will come in and take it away. The Muslims know that very well and that is why we wanted to come up with Glory Bank (for the Christians). And we thank Tricord coming in partnership with GloTrans to help us.
Billy: I know people in America don’t sometimes understand the challenges as clearly as they should. Sometimes we’re so accustomed to giving money and donating money—which is very important!—but we don’t sometimes understand the need of actually using our dollars to invest and be able to help churches. And you’re saying right now that being able to borrow the money is one of the key tools.
Pastor Herberts: This is what we’ve been talking about with some investors. Donations is good. And the missionary way of running church with the old mentality is great. But I don’t think it is at this moment able to meet the needs of the church. So a donation is great. But you can’t really plant on a donation. Because you never know when you need a lump sum money. Because you depend on the donation, and someone may say “I will give you this, and maybe I will give you this in October or September.” So you have no actual money with you and yet you may need to do something there and then. And you may need to get money right away
Billy: Yeah, you need it now.
Pastor Herberts: They need it now. Also I think, to help the church in Africa, Billy, this is my mindset. The time has come that the church in Africa can feel that they have done some things by their own hand. It’s time to feel that they have done something on their own.
Billy: So they have ownership.
Pastor Herberts: They have ownership. You don’t need to come from the U.S. all the time and say “I’m going to build you this, I’m going to build that.” I mean that’s great! I will love it. But if you can put something that can be substantial [and sustainable] that I know you’ve put a lump sum money there so I can always go and use it and bring it back, use it and pay it back. In the end it’s a win-win. You have helped me do what I’m supposed to do. At the same time, I feel that I have worked also myself and I will praise God.
Billy: Praise God. Well this has been good.
To learn more about what we do through Tricord Global and Wealthbuilders, visit our websites (Note: we have an updated video for Tricord in the works!). Join me every Friday for tips on investing in yourself and others!