This week we would like to share some stories with you about three women who live in the village of Bugosa in Butaleja District, Uganda: Mbulasala, Margaret and Mary.
Their involvement in a widows’ savings group enabled by a little bit of HOPE (Uganda) has given them the opportunity to transform their lives for the better. The central theme and aim of the savings group, as with all of our projects, is sustainability. The women who borrow money from the group use it to start or strengthen a small business so that they are able to earn money to support themselves and their families, rather than using the money to directly pay for household goods or school fees, for example. The profit generated from the businesses also allow them to pay interest back into the savings group, which provides capital for others to borrow from the group.
Mbulasala and Margaret both borrowed 50,000 shillings from the savings group and used the money to invest in to their small-scale produce-selling businesses. Mbulasala sells groundnuts, tomatoes, silver fish, onions, cabbages, avocados and eggplants. The loan enabled her to expand the types of food she sells and has helped boost her business. Margaret sells fried and pounded groundnuts and soya beans. The money she borrowed was also invested into the business and the returns help her to provide food and materials for her children. She regularly saves with the widows group, which gives her security for the future of herself and her family.
Mary borrowed 30,000 shillings and also received training on saving from a little bit of HOPE (Uganda). She bought tomatoes, onions, silver fish and eggplants to start her business that had not been able to run for over a year. Having paid back the loan, she is now able to save for the future and pay school fees for her child at home.
The savings group also, importantly, brings together women who are all so different, yet share the same struggles. They are able to support and encourage each other, and utilise the benefits of saving as a group, rather than individually.
Thank you for helping to support the livelihood of women like Mbulasala, Mary and Margaret.
Just £10 a month can help to create more sustainable business in Butaleja and empower individuals to make a difference for themselves, their families and their community. If you would like to know more about our work with the widows of Bugosa, you can read more articles here: www.alittlebitofhope.org/widow-care or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.