Meet Helene: Opportunity Gambela branch client
Helene lives in Kinshasa and operates a business in the Gambela marketplace. A born entrepreneur, Helene is a true inspiration as she faces head-on the daily struggles associated with supporting a family of eleven amidst the unrelenting cycle of dire poverty in the DR Congo. Not only does she support her four children but she has also taken on five orphans. “BEFORE, I could not send the children to school and two or three times per week the entire family went to sleep with only tea. TODAY, thanks to Opportunity, I offer my children better nutrition plus schooling for two of the older children so far.” When asked her dreams for the future, Helene responded, “To have the ability to assist more orphans within our church. May God bless my loan Officer, Kanku and Opportunity because they allowed God to answer my prayer for my own family and for His orphans that He gives me to love.”
Gambela branch spotlight: first nine months of operations
Through your generosity, Opportunity opened the doors in the Gambela marketplace area of Kinshasa, DR Congo with the launch of its second branch. As of June 30, 2012, the branch has loans to 2,349 hardworking entrepreneurs, nearly triple from 822 in March, who now go to market each day armed with the capital, training and support they need to stand out amidst a sea of grassroots business operators. You are funding Opportunity’s Trust Group model through which entrepreneurs are being transformed into successful business proprietors who are filled with pride of ownership and a new sense of hope in their ability to build a future filled with the same dreams and aspirations for their children as we do for ours.
Group members are reaping the benefits of robust financial literacy training, support and mentoring along with access to new skills to manage the risks associated with poverty while vastly improving quality of life for their families and communities. Because of you, men and women in Gambela are holding their heads a little higher and clients like Helene literally have a bit more to feed their children tonight while they dream of their first day of school tomorrow.
Here is where the Gambela branch is as of June 30, 2012 against its 2012 year-end goals:
- Launch 100 Trust Groups – today we are at 247 – more than doubling the 2012 goal.
- Reach 2,500 active loan clients – we are at 2,349, nearly meeting the year-end goal.
- Disburse $400,000 in loans – $860,000 disbursed – more than doubling the year-end goal by the first half of 2012.