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Empowerment of Women

Empowering Zimbabwe Women through Education and Micro-finance

The International Relief Friendship Foundation, Zimbabwe Chapter is doing very well considering difficulties the country is going through politically and economically, as well as because of the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

One difficulty is that non-governmental organizations may carry out microfinance programs to help people who start business projects, but they may not charge interest. We talked to the authorities and reached some kind of understanding; we then started our program.

  After offering character education and business education to twenty women from a poor area of Epworth in the capital, Harare, on October 27, 2007, we then gave US$45 to each of the fifteen women who qualified to start businesses of selling vegetables.

At the end of the workshop, women filled out an application for a loan and signed an agreement form; the loan money was then distributed. These recipients are selling vegetables and fruits at the marketplace. They are willing to work hard to be successful in life and express their appreciation to IRFF for opening the way for them to achieve success.

The second phase is to give money to about ten women who are doing well, as well as some newcomers. However, because of the high inflation rate, the money will not be sufficient to distribute to all the fifteen women, as we had originally planned.

There is so much to be done in Zimbabwe because of many programs the government is undertaking. One of the programs we think is important is resettlement. People are being resettled in new areas around the country, but in some areas there are no schools or hospitals. These areas could benefit from IRFF’s help.

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