Looking back in 2001, two men were chatting over a cup of coffee, sharing their thoughts on what must be done to help the poor get out from the shackles of poverty. They prayed for this day where they would hear testimonies of lives being transformed as livelihood programs are being provided for the poor. A handful of Christian friends unselfishly emptied their pockets as a true act of worship and Christianity to help start the program as they got challenged with the vision that was shared. August 2001 marked the beginning of Katuwang’s operation with around P150,000.00 available funds and three staff members. Just less than a month of operation, the first few beneficiaries of Katuwang were devastated by a fire that gutted down over 200 houses, mostly owned by Katuwang beneficiaries. With a clear sense of purpose, Katuwang disbursed funds earlier than scheduled date of release to people who needed help at that very moment. Because of this, the sincerity of Katuwang was tested, “in the furnace” so to speak, and found themselves to be a true “helpmate”.
In 2002, Oiko Credit, our first partner took the risk of assisting a struggling NGO and made available P2.8 million funds for KRCI.
In 2007, Katuwang partnered with Taytay sa Kauwagan, Inc. (TSKI) who not only provided us with almost P38.10 million fresh funds but also taught us a proven system – the Bayanihan Program. With the system in place, KRCI started to network to other MFIs and in 2009 became a member of APPEND (Alliance of Philippine Partners in Enterprise Development).
Today we continue to reach out to as many economically challenged and spiritually hurting Negrenses as far as our funds can provide.