Many women who live in the rural villages of Africa have little hope for the future because of poor living conditions and prospects. Over the past 15 years, we have helped over 150,000 women, and more than 600,000 children to improve their prospects by funding their schooling through the money earnt through their businesses.
Loveness Banda and her husband Daniel have nine children (one of which sadly died) and seven grandchildren. They have been happily married for 35 years but living in rural Malawi has brought its challenges.
Starting a business
For people who want to start up their own business in Malawi, it is very difficult to secure a loan, as most organisations only offer loans to large businesses.
Loveness joined a MicroLoan group and accessed a loan of around £200 to set up a market stall. She sells scones, bought from women in the village, and homegrown produce, which is farmed by Daniel.
We offered them the chance that they needed to finally expand their business, the only option that they had to achieve financial stability for their family. Rather than giving them charity handouts, that can only last so long, we enabled Loveness and Daniel to sustain their own income.
Educating her family
In 2012, only 18.5% of boys and 11.6% of girls who lived in rural areas in Malawi had completed secondary education. Primary education in Malawi is free but uniforms and stationery financially burden parents, and secondary school can cost anything from £20 – £700 a year.
Although they live in a remote village in Chamama, six of Loveness and Daniel’s children have been able to access education. Their two youngest children are currently at secondary school; however, the completion of their schooling heavily depends on the success of Loveness and Daniel’s business.
Work is paying off
Due to her success, Loveness is well-respected in her community. Much to her husband’s pride, she is also the chairman of the Kontho group. The Kontho group is an empowering team of 14 women who use our loans to expand on their business pursuits and support their families.
After going from strength to strength, Loveness and Daniel are now on their way to reaching their next business goals of setting up their own bakery and buying a car to transport their goods.
How you can make a difference
There are so many ways that you can get involved to support some of the most disadvantaged women in the world in earning a living. Whether you’d like to partner with us, raise money for us, join our team or take part in one of our exciting fundraising events, take a look around our website to find out more about us.