Because of your generous support, women like Suvarna are able to overcome the hardships associated with chronic poverty. With access to financial services, families no longer have to fear tomorrow. Just a small loan can give a hardworking entrepreneur the opportunity to achieve life-changing transformation. With the proper tools, our clients are able to accomplish their dreams and build secure futures. Your commitment to Opportunity has changed everything for Suvarna and the women in her community.
Meet Opportunity Loan Client, Deepa. Deepa is a jewelry maker living in Chennai, India.
Deepa comes from a marginalized gypsy community in an unhealthy living environment. Before joining Opportunity, Deepa used to collect and sell waste paper, earning less than $2 a day.She felt stuck in poverty until she heard about Opportunity International's banking services. She was able to secure her first loan of US $55 from Opportunity and purchased plastic Tiffin boxes to sell in the market, which still netted her a meager income. So she decided to take out a second loan of US $146. WIth the loan, she bought materials to create necklaces that she sold at the local market for a good price. For the first time in her life, she was able to make a sustainable living.
The gypsy women in Deepa’s community noticed her success and asked her for her help. She taught them how to make the beautiful necklaces and gave them advice on selling them.The women became Opportunity clients too and took out loans of their own.
Now, every Friday, the entire community gathers at the market to sell their products, working as a team. This is how just one loan can make the difference in a community. It empowers women to make a sustaibable living and teach others who are struggling in their community to do the same. Your contributions to Opportunity International have helped to lift communties out of the debiliating cycle of poverty.
India has the largest concentration of the poor globally, with over 840 million people living on less than $2 per day. Opportunity is achieving widespread impact in India through 14 institutions, including Growing Opportunity Finance, serving 1.4 million clients through 739 branches across 190 districts in 19 states.
India has the largest concentration of the poor globally, but since October 2010, microfinance investors and lenders throughout India were forced to slow lending or step out. In December 2011, the Reserve Bank amended microfinance regulations to allow some microfinance practitioners with proven fair practices, like Opportunity, to reengage in the microfinance sector. Our Dia Vikas partners like Growing Opportunity Finance (GO Finance) are positioned to return to our former level of growth and impact in India.
One of the ways Opportunity creates a better future for Indian women is through our education finance loans. We believe the most basic but essential building block of empowering people to work their way out of poverty is education. This is more than common sense, there are facts, including these from USAID, to back it up. A few of the most alarming:
Opportunity International is working toward the day when all girls have access to an education. We provide school fee loans in India so parents can afford their children’s tuition. Our loans and business training for school proprietors help them build schools and hire teachers. When a girl is sent to school, she has the chance for a healthier, more hopeful future with choices her mother never had. With more education, girls marry later and have fewer children, the country's economy improves and government corruption declines.
These are the opportunities that are now available to Ramya, a 1st grader in India who is a recipient of a scholarship from our Education Finance program in India. Ramya wants to be a doctor when she grows up, and she knows that getting a good education now is the only way she will be able to achieve her dreams. Some of our donors had the chance to meet Ramya during an Insight Trip to visit our work in India, and she was thrilled to share her dreams and hopes with them. With her scholarship from Opportunity, these dreams can now someday become a reality.
Thank you for all your support in helping girls like Ramya build a better future!
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