Micro-finance Programme

Our mission here is to empower parents in Addis Ababa to meet the rights of their children and extended family by creating their own financial security and receiving family planning and health services.

We work to empower women both financially and socially via the provision of micro-loans, alongside business skills training and life skills training, provision of a health and life insurance.

It enables women to develop their own businesses, boost their household income and improve their business acumen.
This has a massive impact on children’s wellbeing, their access to healthcare and their education.

In 2016 1000 woman benefit from our micro-loans and close mentoring. This will change the lives of more than 5000 people, considering a woman re-invests 98% of her income to support her family of five.

We have been awarded Top 2 MFI programme in Addis Ababa

  • Very low default rate at 4%, we always recuperate the money loaned
  • 5 family members benefit directly
  • Income differential often 100%
  • Second COOP becoming independent in 2017
  • Third Coop to launch in 2018

2016 Default rate

  • We have calculated a higher default rate in 2016 around 5.0%… however Abinet our MFI leader has already made significant gains to reduce this number so it has likely dropped now to below 4%.
  • Main reason for increase is the number of women who were recruited in the Kechene area, a largely transient area next to Shiromeda where women joined the program, did the training and took a loan but ultimately left to return to their original area (in the countryside). Some of these women left behind small savings in the credit co-op and the co-op is able to recoup the losses by taking over the savings.

Successes in 2016

  • Smooth change over of directors from Yetanyte to Abinet
  • Annual Christmas bazaar in January with over 25 women
  • 2nd Food Training program with 15 women in September/October
  • Capacity building with our Co-op leaders
  • Capacity build to give higher loans for women to expand their businesses

Going forwards 2017

  • Christmas bazaar beginning of January for 3 days with 25+ women
  • Plan to expand into three new areas following a needs assessment to be carried out by our director & assistant
  • Start a new cooperative with new members joining in 2018
  • Continue building capacity of current co-op leaders
  • To work on supporting defaulters to begin repayments

Action points generated in early 2017

a) Independence of WEEP 1 coop by end of 2017 (which means that office & 1 salary will be funded for 2017)
b) Assist coop leaders with the creation of income generating activities for the coop
c) Assist the coop leaders to find a suitable office for 2018 (discussed space at kebele compound)
d) Continue to recruit NEW women at existing coop (we discussed a target of 100 new women in 2017)
e) Continue strict follow up of current defaulters to reduce numbers & maintain low default rate
f) Carry out various training programs throughout the year, including Food Training during the summer
g) Lay ground work for NEW coop (WEEP 2) to begin in 2018 – this includes:

  • Carry out research in 3 areas (sidist kilo, Nigeria embassy, Simien hotel) to see microfinance demand
  • Recruit minimum number of new women in these areas to formally register a new coop

Poverty is a vicious cycle. Families can’t provide for their children. Children end up on the streets. Small loans to women have proved effective in improving the economic situation of the family and making them more resilient to financial shocks that can be otherwise devastating. Furthermore, mothers who run their own businesses gain confidence and self worth and act as strong role models for their children, particularly their daughters.

Our microfinance program aims to create independent, economically sufficient women who can provide for their families.

This program is scalable, cost effective and for each woman who benefits directly there are 5 dependents that benefit directly. Our 800 women go on to benefit 4000 dependents, mainly those most vulnerable – children and elderly family members. The women who take part in our micro-finance programme learn life skills and financial literacy, as well as the importance of saving money. With the small loan that they receive (£35 in the first round), they’re typically able to raise their family above the poverty line in around one or two years.

As with our vocational training programme, these women attend a business course where they learn life skills such as saving money, basic accounting and how to be financially literate. They are also taught about family planning, hygiene and nutrition. Typically they create up to five times more profit with their businesses, than they did beforehand.

One of the mothers of our schoolchildren… We could give you hundreds of examples where an investment of £35 in one women enables her to support her family and weather economic shocks.

Here is one example

Tigist Nega – Has four daughters and lives at the top of Entoto just off the main road. Her husband is a priest at the large church nearby and earns a small amount and gives very little of it to his wife. In an effort to gain some financial independence Tigist was making tella and serving it to customers in a make shift “bar” in her front yard. However, she was only able to make small amounts because she could not afford big enough quantities of the raw materials. Tigist was among the first women to join our program thanks to our Entoto Satellite Office location. With her first loan she expanded her tella making business and bought chickens as well.

She too has big plans for the next loan and is currently paying off the first loan quickly and without problems. She wants to start buying coffee and expand her bar/café and grow her customers. She says that our program has inspired her to see the potential in running a business. With the training she has learned important skills needed to maintain a successful business. Most importantly she now earns her own money to spend how she chooses. Her 3 eldest daughters go to school and she wants to be a role model for them to continue their education and have their own financial independence.

Thank You!

A huge Thank You to Annoushka Ducas of Annoushka Jewellery, who has provided exceptional support to our Micro-Finance Programme : economically and strategically.
Annoushka has been fundamental in the progress and expansion of the programme.

We cannot thank Annoushka enough for her generosity, which has changed the lives of more than 5700 people fundamentally over the course of her commitment.

Loan rounds

These boxes indicate how many loans of each round were dispersed in 2016 from January to December.

Additional indicators for 2016

This indicates TOTAL number of NEW women recruited over the year, TOTAL amount of loan money disbursed and TOTAL interest accrued by the cooperative in 2016.