Examples of beneficiaries in Uganda

Betty Kibode

Foto von Frauen bei der Herstellung von Saft.
Women are stronger together”

Togeth­er we are able to achieve more”, became the mot­to of these women liv­ing in a small vil­lage. Ten women, under the lead­er­ship of Bet­ty Kibode, joined forces to form a coop­er­a­tive sell­ing pineap­ples, man­goes, and pas­sion fruits for juic­ing. The busi­ness plan was a coop­er­a­tive project, where each woman applied for a loan of 75 US-Dol­lar for a cumu­la­tive 750 US Dol­lar. With the funds they pur­chased con­tain­ers for the pre­pared fruits, a juicer, and a device for the seal­ing of plas­tic bags. Each of the ten women fre­quent­ly con­tributes an agreed quan­ti­ty of fruits and helps with the pro­cess­ing of the juices, which is then trans­ferred into the plas­tic bags. The mar­ket­ing is also accom­plished by the women – with high suc­cess. They sell their juice to local shops and schools in their area. Each of the ten women were able to repay their loan with­in a time­ly man­ner. With their prof­its and a sec­ond loan, busi­ness oper­a­tions were expand­ed fur­ther. They pur­chased more pack­ag­ing mate­r­i­al, print­ed labels, and new equip­ment for the seal­ing of the plas­tic bags. Lead­ing by exam­ple, women who intel­li­gent­ly con­sol­i­dat­ed busi­ness plans and diver­si­fied. A joint pur­pose and col­lab­o­ra­tive work pay off and secures against sea­son­al fluc­tu­a­tions. Coop­er­a­tive busi­ness mod­els as well as diver­si­fi­ca­tion meet the fun­da­men­tal core val­ues of Swisshand.

Maria Kolonga

My dream was to earn a sufficient income as a seamstress”

Maria Kolon­ga is a wid­ow with five chil­dren. After her husband’s death, she fell into a frag­ile finan­cial sit­u­a­tion. She was unable to finan­cial­ly cov­er the basic needs of her fam­i­ly and knew no way out. Until she was made aware of the micro­cre­d­it pro­gramme by the vil­lage leader and sought out the pro­gramme coor­di­na­tor, quick­ly becom­ing a turn­ing point for her life.

As an expe­ri­enced seam­stress, she has long dreamt of man­ag­ing her own small busi­ness. The coor­di­na­tor quick­ly took notice of her fea­si­ble busi­ness mod­el: a poten­tial cus­tomer base for children’s cloth­ing was exis­tent and Maria Kolon­ga had proven her­self to be proac­tive and deter­mined. Togeth­er they gen­er­at­ed a sim­ple busi­ness mod­el, with which Maria received a loan of 120 US-Dol­lar for the dura­tion of six months. Short­ly after a com­plet­ed train­ing course con­tain­ing the ele­men­tary skills need­ed for suc­cess­ful busi­ness man­age­ment, Maria pur­chased a sewing machine as well as var­i­ous colour­ful fab­rics, using her loan. With immense joy, she began sewing sim­ple children’s cloth­ing. From the start she was able to sell her clothes well. Her busi­ness devel­oped as she had hoped. On a steady month­ly basis, she was able to punc­tu­al­ly repay her instal­ments, until the entire­ty of the loan was amor­tised. And so, Maria had quick­ly pro­gressed from a finan­cial­ly unsta­ble wid­ow to a respectable busi­ness­woman. Her self esteem rose. She became a new woman.

Foto von Maria Kologna bei ihrer Arbeit als Schneiderin.

Process chain “fish-process-sell” on Lake Victoria

Four women, who live in close prox­im­i­ty to Lake Vic­to­ria, had built up an inter­est­ing busi­ness mod­el: a process chain involv­ing dried sil­ver­fish. Each of the four women are inde­pen­dent entre­pre­neurs; although they work togeth­er close­ly, sim­i­lar to a coop­er­a­tive. With their loans – each receiv­ing 100 US-Dol­lar – they col­lec­tive­ly rent­ed a stor­age shed near the lakeshore, becom­ing the focal point of their busi­ness. The four women work togeth­er with four fish­er­men, who oper­ate a fish­ing boat, as well as with two women who dry, sort, and pre-pack­age the caught fish in bags. The four entre­pre­neurs also organ­ise their sale, as well as their trans­port to the cus­tomers and dis­trib­uters, allow­ing for the com­plete val­ue chain to be cen­tral­ly con­trolled by them. As a result of the coop­er­a­tive oper­a­tion, they are in a posi­tion of con­tin­u­ous sup­ply and deliv­ery, allow­ing them to request a bet­ter price. The estab­lish­ment of a finan­cial buffer allows them to be finan­cial­ly secured even dur­ing the rainy sea­sons, when the dry­ing of the fish at the lakeshore is not pos­si­ble. Sea­son­al fluc­tu­a­tions recoup the four women, as they are able to cul­ti­vate fruits and veg­eta­bles dur­ing off times. More­over, one of the women has recent­ly also begun to pur­chase, cure, and sell tilapia and Nile perch.

Foto von Frauen beim Sammeln von Silberfisch am Viktoriasee.

Nuulu Mulondo

Foto von Nuulu Mulondo bei der Arbeit an ihrer eigenen Tankstelle.
Today I am a hard-working businesswoman”

Nuu­lu Mulon­do lives in the east of Ugan­da. In her vil­lage of Busand­ha (dis­trict of Kamuli), she has a small busi­ness in a com­mer­cial cen­tre. Nuu­lu is mar­ried and moth­er to twelve chil­dren. Her hus­band is a Boda-boda-dri­ver, a tra­di­tion­al motor­cy­cle taxi in East Africa. How­ev­er, the income earned by the father is not suf­fi­cient for the fam­i­ly. Nuu­lu Mulon­do is very thank­ful for Swis­s­hand. She was able to par­tic­i­pate in a pro­gramme mak­ing her a small-scale entre­pre­neur. For such she was trained: she learned how a busi­ness is estab­lished and led and that start­ing cap­i­tal is not ade­quate for a suc­cess­ful busi­ness, but also loan repay­ments and con­tin­u­ous invest­ments. More­over, she learned that with­out dis­ci­plined bud­get­ing, a busi­ness will not func­tion. Under care­ful instruc­tion, she devel­oped a busi­ness plan. The idea had already been found­ed: in light of her husband’s job as taxi dri­ver, but also the mul­ti­tude of motor­cy­cles and cars which per­sis­tent­ly jour­ney through the vil­lage, she took notice of the far-off petrol sta­tion which was nowhere near her busy vil­lage. With her loan from Swis­s­hand worth 300’000 Ugan­dan shillings (near­ly 90 CHF), she built up a petrol sta­tion – not a mod­ern one with a petrol pump as we know it. Nuu­lu sim­ply pours the petrol out of the plas­tic can­is­ters into the tanks of her cus­tomers. Her busi­ness is run­ning excellently.