How your one giving helps a family out of poverty AND gives you a tax break

Here’s another story we couldn’t resist sharing of how your giving has helped another woman lift her family out of poverty…

Hairdresser and salon owner, Madalitso

Madalitso Nkhoma left school at age of 13, and gave birth to her first child a few years later. Now age 31, Madalitso has two children aged 15 and nine and cares for one orphan.

Young women often end education early, and are married young in order to relieve the financial burden on their parents. As a result, there are many barriers to independence and self-sufficiency for women like Madalitso, including low literacy rates. Employment opportunities are scarce and many women are unable to access capital to start their own business. This is compounded by geographical factors, as living in remote villages means there is little or no access to formal banking services.

Soon after the birth of her first child Madalitso started a small business running a hair salon to alleviate some of the mounting financial pressure on her husband. Initially, her business struggled due to a lack of capital and she failed to attract enough customers to cover the running costs.

A friend told Madalitso about MicroLoan’s livelihoods programme and within a few months of financial literacy and business training, Madalitso learned how market research can help her to keep her salon in high demand, and stand out from her competitors. She invested her first loan in hair dryers, straighteners, and weaves which gave her salon the upgrade it needed to attract more customers.

Now on her 6th loan cycle, her weekly profits have doubled from MWK15,000 to MWK30,000, (A$10 to A$20) and she has been able to hire one paid employee. When chatting to the MicroLoan team, Madalitso had high praise for her Loan & Training Officers who delivered training and mentoring which gave her the confidence to independently manage her income and savings, re-investing her profits for growth. With these skills, Madalitso has diversified her business, using a portion of her profits to buy gift wrapping paper to sell.

With her income, Madalitso pays for her children’s education and supports family members whose financial situation have been devastated by COVID-19. The success of her salon has also enabled Madalitso to save enough money to complete the construction of a new home for her family.

So what’s next for Madalitso’s salon?

Did you know that many of the women we support are farmers?

Maize, beans and rice are examples of crops they grow. MicroLoan targets female smallholder farmers to tackle food insecurity and financial exclusion in some of the most rural and poor areas of sub-Saharan Africa.

Published on: 15/06/2022

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