Manna Microfinance supports women in building their livelihoods so that they can provide for their families.
The women run their businesses in groups which means that if one of them encounters problems, the others can rally around and provide support. The programme is run by local staff who work with the women, delivering business training and collecting loan repayments. Emma and Margaret are two women who have taken the initiative to start their own businesses and partner with Manna to make their plans a reality.
Emma lives in Juba with her husband and four children. After South Sudan gained independence, Emma started a small business with her husband and gained experience of what this entails. However, the political conflict worsened in 2016 and unfortunately, Emma’s husband had to stop working. It was at this time that she met Nancy, a member of Manna Microfinance staff, who was visiting her church. After this encounter, Emma formed a group with five of her friends and they each received 3000 SSP (approximately £17 GBP) to build their own small businesses.
After repaying the initial loan, Emma received a further loan of 10,000 SSP and as a result, now rents a small space in Sukun Libia market where she makes a profit selling biscuits and pastries:
“I am very pleased with the Juba Diocese who have been working with AID. We have been able to restart again – we are supporting each other now. I am able to buy food for my family, take care of health expenses and take children to school all alone because my husband is not working now”.
Another Manna partner, Margaret, lives with her mother and her four children. As this living situation proved financially difficult, Margaret took the decision to set up a business making biscuits. Through her church where she too met a member of Manna staff, Margaret has received loans twice. She has repaid the first one and is now in the process of repaying the second one using the profits from her business. Through her ambition and enterprise, Margaret is now able to finance school fees and daily meals for her four children, allowing them the start in life they need.
These two inspiring initiative-takers are great examples of the many women who collaborate with Manna to start and grow their own businesses, using their own savings alongside loans to become self-sufficient and provide for their families. Please thank God for his hand in alleviating poverty through the work of Manna Microfinance and pray that it would be possible to greatly increase the amount of loans that are made available to women who are waiting with fantastic business ideas.