Melba’s Story

This is Melba, a hardworking mother of three from Zambia, who started her own village shop six months ago. Her determination and practical approach have turned this small venture into a vital resource for her community.

Melba’s shop offers a variety of goods, from daily essentials like toiletries, snacks and sweets to weaves and hairpieces. While Melba can source most items locally, to get the popular weaves and hairpieces, she must travel by train for 24 hours to reach Lusaka, 500km away.

To kickstart her business, Melba used savings from a previous charcoal-selling venture and secured a 3,000 kwa (A$174) loan from MicroLoan Foundation. This financial support covered initial rent and stocked her shop. Now, Melba manages her store carefully, ensuring each sale not only covers costs but also brings in a sustainable profit.

Beyond managing the shop, Melba supports her three children, who all attend school. Melba’s younger sister plays an active role in helping to run the store, contributing to its success.

Although Melba’s shop is still relatively new, her ambitions are high. She plans to seek more loans to improve the store, add shelves, and focus on high-profit products. For instance, she can buy a tub of bubblegum for 45 kwa (A$2.60 and sell individual pieces for 15 kwa (A$0.87) each, which helps her make a healthy profit.

Melba’s story demonstrates the impact of microfinance in turning entrepreneurial dreams into reality. MicroLoan Foundation continues to empower individuals like Melba, enabling them to create positive changes in their lives and communities.

Published on: 14/02/2024

Share this...