Microfinance

Trapped in poverty

Men and women in the regions where we work struggle to provide food and other essentials for their families due to poorly paid and unreliable work. Microfinance helps families trapped in poverty to develop their own income so they can provide for themselves and escape poverty for the long term. You can watch Mary’s story to see what life is like for some of the families we work with before they join a microfinance project.

“Before I started the shop it was so difficult for us to have our daily food, the profits from daily sales helped my family to feed every day and to support my children’s schooling – buying uniform and books.” Rose

You can watch Mary’s story to see what life is like for some of the families we work with before they join a microfinance project.

With a ‘hand-up not a hand-out’ mentality, our microfinance programmes give men and women access to economic opportunities (i.e. a loan) that enables families to grow businesses, create employment, earn money and rebuild lives. Crucially, our microfinance projects are closely linked with local churches to ensure accountability and long-term stability.

We run projects in Juba and Yei (South Sudan), and Marsabit (northern Kenya).

In South Sudan we work only with women as they are most often are the ones to care for and raise children. Many women have been widowed through South Sudan’s conflict or husbands may be absent. In Marsabit, Kenya, the project is open to men and women who meet in separate groups.

How it works

In partnership with local churches AID selects staff to run the project who are then trained, equipped and supported by AID.

  • Women and/or men are invited to join a group through a notice given in a local church.
  • Those who are selected must join a group of 6-12 members. Group membership is very important.
  • They then attend weekly group meetings for 8 weeks where they receive training and make savings.
  • After 8 weeks, a member is eligible to apply for a loan.
  • The loan and new skills are used to begin or develop a business.
  • Members must then make regular repayments at a low interest rate, as well as contributing to savings, until the loan is paid off.
  • They may then apply for a second loan.

"I appreciate Yei Microfinance programme because it uplifts women from hardship situations to be able to support their own families independently"

Rose

Group meetings

Groups meetings begin with prayer and spiritual encouragement before moving on to training, making loan repayments and contributing to savings accounts. Training covers areas such as group principles, savings, book keeping, money management, entrepreneurial awareness and ethics. The group structure helps to provide stability and support for the women both in their work and their lives.

See how microfinance has transformed Stella's life in Juba, South Sudan

How can I help?

You can help families trapped in poverty by praying and donating. The most useful way to give is to set up a monthly standing order (anything from £5 to £500 makes a difference!) but we gladly welcome one-off gifts to all our projects.

Please join us in praying for these families to know God’s provision and goodness.