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Jul 25, 2018

Keep a Girl Alive training 20-23 June 2018

Since 2012 Reach Out Cameroon has been working with girls aged from 18 to 35 to help them break out of poverty by themselves. This year 2018 we have helped 76 new girls from the village of Tole. From the beneficiaries and Reach Out’s team we would like to thank each one of you, donors, for your support to the program. We have seen a steady increase in beneficiaries and in prosperity.

The girls are monitored and assessed monthly by Reach Out’s team through surveys and their bookkeeping records. The monitoring has helped us keep records of whether the program is working and from what I have experienced being with the team for the shortest time (month) as a volunteer, is nothing short of amazing. The girls have gained experience and are getting confident with every training session we do. They are asking important questions such as “How do we save money?”, which will help them grow and understand business. Their ambitions have changed from unrealistic dreams to some real achievable goals. I had one of the beneficiaries say at the beginning of the training how she wanted a million CFA (about 1,800$) and at the end, she realized that is not reality, what is achievable is sending her children to a better school. The program gives the girls a sense of hope and understanding. It helps them realize they can stand on their own and be more independent.

So personally I would like to thank each one of you donors for what you have accomplished with your kindness and generosity. This is my first time volunteering for a program and I feel this is an amazing and inspiring program as it teaches independence and drives the beneficiaries to have a business mentality which I know is very important. 

The objective of the Project is to improve the girl’s lives through the businesses they start. To take them out of poverty and move forward without restrictions and independently earning their own money.  

My understanding of the programme created by the KGA is to teach the beneficiaries how to use the money wisely, why they should choose a business carefully, how and why they should save money, how they can invest their money correctly and the importance on bookkeeping. Also to teach them how to be responsible for what they do in life. To teach them to be focused, responsible and accountable.

The main objective is to improve their average income of each girl after a period of time (a year).

On Wednesday 20th June 2018, we held a programme in Tole for the new recruit of girls. It was the 3rd batch of girls of the year. The training consisted of bookkeeping, entrepreneurship, savings, business creation, and sexual reproductive health. The training concluded on the Thursday 21st June 2018.

On Friday 22nd June 2018 Reach Out Cameroon distributed to the new girls in the programme a capital of 30,000 CFA grants for their businesses.

1st day (20 June 2018)

  • Introduction
  • Baseline survey
  • Bookkeeping
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Savings (including homework)
  • Business advice
  • Lunch
  • Concluded the 1st days training at 2:30

2nd day (21 June 2018)

  • Homework corrections
  • Revision on bookkeeping
  • Comparing two business
  • Sexual Reproductive Health
  • Lecture from Blanche
  • Business planning
  • Closing remarks
  • Lunch
  • Reminded the girls to meet at the Chief's palace 23 June 2018 to collect their grant

3rd day (22 June 2018)

  • Arrived at the Chief's palace at 9:00
  • Started with an opening prayer
  • Advice from the KGA team
  • Presented the grants to the beneficiaries (the beneficiaries signed for their grants once received)
  • Finished with a group photo

 

Thank you very much for making it possible!

Project participant  (Blanche) teaching new girls
Project participant (Blanche) teaching new girls
Follow-up with Victorine
Follow-up with Victorine
Bookkeeping practical excercise
Bookkeeping practical excercise
Thank you!
Thank you!
Jul 19, 2018

Helping Gladys help herself

Gladys is one of the most impressive girls we have worked with since we started our program in Tole in 2012. From the time she received the grant till now, there has been really a lot of improvement and everyone around her can testify about it. She is the breadwinner of her family and has to put every bit of her energy to see that her business succeeds.  She started buying and selling banana in Tole and made a great profit out of it and later on decided to get into motorbike spare parts business and built the small mechanics shop that inspired this project. The business has been good so far and she keeps accurate records in her books. Thanks to you, donors.

With your support, we gave her a business grant and later on she also took a low-interest loan to improve their business. She was able to pay back very quick, in 3 installments instead of 6. Your generous donations that started this chain.

Gladys has had some challenges so far but among which is the fact that other competitors have entered into the same business. ’’The turnover is not the same compared to when I was the only one selling motorbike spare parts in Tole’’  there are now some other people selling spare parts in tole and the competition is really tough given the fact that one of them has a motorbike mechanic (repairer) which has made her lose some customers. Despite these challenges, she keeps growing. ‘’I always make  profit no matter the situation’’.

‘’I want to say thank you for helping me and the others especially us the ladies to do business and making us become useful not to be jobless and not depending on our boyfriends and family any longer. Thank you’’


Jul 19, 2018

Microfinance Report

 

In January 2018, we started giving out loans to participants of the Keep a Girl Alive project. It has been going well, beyond our expectations. 24 girls have requested for loans to improve on their businesses and so far up to 95% of the girls pay back on time. The loan project has really been effective and the number is increasing from 15 girls in the month of April to 24 presently. Those who took the loans are seeing the effects already.

Lizette made an increase of 24% in her profits as a result of her increase in capital. She is now running a small permanent shop. She was before selling in the local market and this is an important step up. Irene too is making a great profit from her business as a result of an increase in her capital. Her profit has increased by about 20%.  It was all possible thanks to you. There are some setbacks with a few of the ladies due to some personal reasons. For instance, Christina, lost her small nephew and she wasn’t able to pay back for that month, she was the only one taking care of him. But she recovered and she has already paid back the loan. Also, the general market conditions have also posed some challenges due to the current conflict between state and non-state armed forces. Some market days are lost, the safety of movement is not guaranteed and some commodity prices have increased. Also, major roads have been blocked which makes the purchase of some products difficult.

But in all, your donation has greatly helped the girls to increase their purchasing power and as a result increase in their profits as compared to the previous months. Most of them aspire to be operating bigger businesses in the nearest future and also to make life easy for their children when they grow up. As per their current data, I think these goals can be achieved. All thanks to you, donors.


 
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