Mama Shillia Supports A Family of Twelve!

Mama Shillia’s daughter in law was destitute when her husband divorced her. Mama Shillia took her and her two daughters into her already large household, bringing the number of people dependent on Mama Shilia’s small business up to twelve! Fortunately she has been able to increase her income generating capacity through a micro-loan from “Village of Love,” and is now able to feed her whole family.Last year at Ramadan, Mama Shillia’s only hope of feeding her large family was to go to the mosque and beg. This year is different.

Mama Shillia has always been resourceful, running her own small business selling perfumes, and other beauty products, but up until now she has not been able to manage without help from the mosque. This has changed, however, through a microloan received from “Village of Love.”

“I heard about this organisation from my friends,” Mama Shilia says. “And now I know that this organisation is better than the others.” The difference that Mama Shilia experienced in applying for and receiving this microloan is that she did not have to show any assets at all in order to receive the loan. The social worker’s knowledge of her and her trustworthiness was sufficient. She was made part of a small group of women who back one another in repaying the loan. The relationships guarantee repayment. There is no interest to be paid on the loan, but when it is repaid, the money will be available to be loaned to others in the cooperative.

Even though the recipients are slum dwellers, the rate of repayment is over 90%, higher than other micro-loans organisations, a tribute to the value of the “Village” cooperative approach, where trust is fostered and beneficiaries receive personal care and attention. 


Along with others receiving loans, Mama Shillia attended a two day workshop in better business practices. Community workers have mentored them as they have begun to apply their loans. Those who have no skills to earn a living have been given workshops to learn a skill, the most recent being soapmaking.

Mama Shillia used her loan wisely to purchase a greater variety of goods to sell, with great success. Already she has repaid her loan, and this month, for the first time, she has not had to go to the mosque to beg for food.

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