When a woman arrives at HOLD to take part in their programs, she is assigned to a Human Development Club. There, she meets women with similar interests from neighborhoods near hers, and she is paired with a counselor to assess her unique needs. This counselor will help her find legal assistance, with family mediation, and will walk closely with her as long as she remains active at HOLD.
The Human Development Clubs have democratically elected leadership, and meet regularly for continued education, social support, and to give back to their community through service projects. Many focused groups have grown from these projects, including Cultural Club and Environmental Club.
Many of Succeeding Together's graduates start businesses with the shared support of their Human Development Club. Most of the people in the DRC who want to start a small business don't have access to microcredit. That involves a bank, and they mostly haven't been in a position to attract one. Instead, a human development club shares "rotating credit" to support and strengthen their businesses as they start up.
The women start by learning to manage and save their own money. If they have accumulated a small savings, they can have access to a small pot of money which they share. If a group of five women shared a pot of $100, three women might borrow $20 each to grow their businesses and pay back the pot plus interest in six months. Then another woman has a turn to pay it forward. This keeps their businesses growing, and they establish a business ownership and credit history -- which is what a bank or credit institution wants to see before extending microcredit.