In Gokwe, Zimbabwe, Gody is 49 yrs old. He is married to Anna and they have three children ( two girls and a boy ). Gody worked at two local companies, but as the national economy slumped dramatically, he found himself unemployed. He tried to start a business with his meagre savings but it did not take off. He struggled to feed his family and his children stopped going to school. They lived in an unfinished two rooms, with an outside latrine, and they fetched water from public taps.
Then he heard of Microlend through a friend who was already benefiting from the loan facility. He applied, and was enrolled in the Microlend training, and later got a loan of USD 2000 in 2018. He used this loan to expand a hardware venture, and assisted his wife to start a trading venture in ladies jewellery, accessories and cosmetics. Their businesses have done very well in spite of COVID 19. His customers used to phone him during lockdown. He managed to send his children back to school, finished off building his house adding four more rooms and an inside bathroom and toilet. They eat three decent meals every day. They repay their loan without failure. They have also created additional jobs, meaning that three families are working themselves out of poverty because of the small loan.
This is just one story in the Gokwe region where Microlend has funded thirty eight new loans during the last year creating 50 new jobs. This added on the over 200 jobs that survived COVID 19. The program has improved household wellbeing, with the majority reporting increased spending on food, health and education as a result of business income. Additionally, the program has increased savings, financial decision-making and poverty eradication. It is empowering the disadvantaged in communities indeed.