Lubaale’s new businesses
On a visit to Lubaale, Mbale, we met three women who’d started small businesses thanks to training that helped them join village savings groups – all three called Sarah!
The first Sarah who testified (on the left) told us she “appreciates so much SAO [the organisation who trained them] and the local leaders who came into our community and told us the good news of women coming together to form groups.”
She told us that before the group came they were “desperate” and in their remote location at the extreme end of their sub-county, felt like nobody bothered about them. But now “we are stronger women, we are confident, we are no longer shy, we don’t fear anything… we know where we are going.”
Sarah actually has two small businesses. She makes doughnuts to sell at a nearby school, and she has another business selling coffee. When she sells the coffee, she is able to pay for her children’s school fees and one of her children is in Senior 4 class (doing O’levels) this year. She says it has “kept my family happy. I am able to sell and get my income and buy salt, buy basic needs in my home, so I am no longer begging my husband and now there is peace and joy in the home.”
Our second Sarah saved in her group until she had enough money to buy a cow. She looked after that cow for one year and then she was able to sell it again and buy a piece of land. She is growing food crops on that land, which is supporting her family. She’s also taken a further loan to open a small shop selling medicines, which will help them further.
Our third Sarah (on the right in the pictures above, with Project Co-ordinator Zebbie) borrowed money to start a tailoring shop at her home. She started slowly but with time it has gone on “growing and growing”. Though her business was small, she did not give up but kept working hard, with encouragement from her group and the local NGO who trained them. She appreciates that her group members “have accepted to be together through difficult times and good times”.