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Jeffrey Ashe draws on his long, distinguished career in international development and his personal experience helping to build savings groups to explain how this simple and powerful approach works. As this book shows, the poor are not too poor to save, there is enough savings potential within a group of twenty to meet most needs, and very small sums can make a big difference. Savings groups are as convenient as meeting under a mango tree in the village, and they are as flexible as the rules group that members design for themselves. They build on existing resources while avoiding the subsidies, debt, dependency, and high costs of other approaches, including microlending. This model has the potential to revolutionize development programs in many other areas, including health, agriculture, education, and even grassroots political empowerment. "Being organized gives us courage," as one saver said. It is their courage translated into action that explains the success of this "in their own hands" approach to development.