Micro-Credit

Cases

Emilia

Emilia is from the country of Nigeria. She has overcome the unexpected death of her husband eight years ago. Since then she has nobly carried the full responsibilities of feeding, sheltering, clothing, bathing and caring for her five children. Emilia’s entrepreneurial spirit has driven her to set up a tiny salon, where she braids hair and earns money. She earns enough to feed the children, but not enough to send them to school. By investing in Emilia, you will strengthen her financially, emotionally and spiritually, and subsequently enable her to thrive in her business. She will therefore be able to carry the weight of her heavy responsibilities with greater ease. An amount of money that to many of us is hardly noticeable — a dinner out, a new dress — is to Emilia a pot of gold that would lift a tremendous burden off of her conscience. Like any mother, all Emilia wants is to provide the best possible life for each of her precious children, who are growing up without a dad.

It is Christmas time. Just like most festive periods in Emilia’s village: Christmas, Easter, Ogho, and even Sundays, the business of braiding hair is brisk for Emilia. She braids hair deep into the night. As you can see in this picture the only illumination she has to do her work is a flash light propped between her chin and shoulder. An investment in her business, a loan of $300 will make it possible for her to acquire a small portable power generator for about $250. She would be able to buy a few other supplies for her trade like hair attachments, hair rollers. Her business would then really take off as she becomes more efficient. She would take on more apprentices, be in a better financial position to afford a hair dryer, and make more money to be able to send her children to school.

Gift

Gift is from the country of Benin. Gift still carries sadness with her, as three years ago her husband died, leaving her to raise five energetic children all alone. A hard worker, Gift tirelessly runs a one room cafeteria serving the people of her village each day. This provides her with enough to feed her children and yet, she wants so much more for them. She is weighed down by a heavy burden of responsibility and guilt. Each night she and her children have to sleep on the floor of the cafeteria on straw mats, and she cannot afford to send them to school. A mini-loan — Gift will not be uplifted by pity, or charity — but instead by giving her credit, you give her a hand up. Help her to help herself. Help Gift see that life does not consist only of endless hard work and sadness; empower her and show her that life can be joyous and filled with bliss.

In this picture, Gift and 4 of her 5 children are in her one room cafeteria which also serves as their home and sleeping place. One of her children is presently living with a distant relative. Gift does not like being separated from her child; and the child is not happy being away from the rest of her siblings. But what can she do as the quarters are overcrowded. With an investment loan of $300, Gift would be able to move her family into the adjacent room for a monthly rent of $15, and reunite her whole family. She would then be able to dedicate the present room to her cafeteria business, buy more supplies and truly expand her business, and be in a financial position to send all her children to school.

Rebecca

Rebecca is from the country of Nigeria. Her strong survivor attitude helps compensate for the loss of her husband almost 7 years ago. Rebecca’s eight children rely on her solely for all of their physical and emotional needs. Rebecca runs a business selling provisions from a shack in her village… she earns barely enough to feed her children one meal per day. But her line of business is a wonderful idea, but she can not take her business idea / plan to any bank to apply for a loan.

With an investment loan of about $200, Rebecca would be able to move from her present shack into a more secure store for a monthly rent of about $5. She would be able to travel to the near by big city so that she can buy more provisions to stock up her store in the village. Because of her enhanced financial capacity, she would not only able to buy more products in quantity, but as well more in variety, and cheaper in price. The enhanced capacity leads to increased traffic to her store, more profit. As her business expands she pulls herself out of poverty. She is now able to feed her family well and send her children to school.