The keep a girl alive program so far in this past months has not been as effective as we would have liked, due to the on-going armed conflict. There were several curfew days issued by the Non-State Armed Groups, and there was constant confrontation between the two sides of the conflict in Tole, making the community very insecure.. We are still in touch with the program participants. 43% of girls are still in the area, and doing business. A small percentage are in the area, not doing business, and the majority have left and are doing business elsewhere. All participants are still doing bookkeeping. Monthly profits dropped in March by about 33%, and are now beginning to improve. With an average working capitalof 28,517 FRS (roughly 50$), some of the businesses are barely surviving.They try to adapt to the current situation, as some of them change their line of businesses just to make sure they survive this period.
For the past two months we have noticed an increase in the request for loans. These loans are use to boost their working capital.Also some of the girls return to the community with no capital and had to request for loans to start all over again. Thanks to your donations, they have a support to rely on. As the environment getscalm by the day more girls keep coming back to the area. So far from the last follow up in the month of May it shows that a good number of them are back in the community but some are yet to start doing business again.
Despite the difficult times some of the girls still keep up to their commitments to saving. At least 35% of the girls save every month this shows that they are very much active even in the current situation. We look forward to having in the coming months an increase in the profit as well as their capital.
Comment from our volunteers.
Lewin: The frequent lock downs and attacks from the non state armed groups, have left the community in a state of fear, putting activities and business on a standstill. Also some of the girls have been disturbed with some medical issues such as children being hospitalized, and there are others who have been sick for quite a while now and had to move to other areas in search for medical help. Many other girls have been showing interest in the program by trying to register.
Adeline: The poor network has weakened the follow up system as it was always difficult to reach the beneficiaries and on time, the Insecurity also contributes, as there were lockdowns and sometimes signals that violence might erupt. All these had a direct effect on the turnout of beneficiaries during follow up (May).