90 women benefit from SCNL loan program in northern Liberia – FrontPageAfrica
MONROVIA – In northern Liberia specifically, Lofa County, the Society for the Conservation of Nature of Liberia (SCNL), with the support of Rainforest Trust (RFT) is currently working extensively for the classification and establishment of the proposed protected area of Foya in a protected area. Region. As part of activities to improve the lives of people in forest edge communities, SCNL’s microcredit program provides millions of Liberian dollars to women (farmers and small businesses) for the improvement of their businesses.
From October 25, 26 and 29, 2022, respectively, 90 women, including women farmers and small business owners from Yallahum, Yanohum, Kailahum, Pasulahum, Lukasu, Pasulahum, Dukor Gbongo and Vahum received LD$20,000.00 each under form of loan to improve their local businesses. During the disbursement in each commune, the heads of communes, young people and elders were present to serve as witnesses. The women were divided into five groups, each group came up with a name, chairperson, rules to govern the group, how much to pay for being late to a meeting and a fine for misbehavior.
SCNL Loan Officer, Yuconjay Noyu. Barchue is passionate, hardworking and determined to see women succeed. She provided training on how the loan will be repaid by the women and taught them how to run their businesses for more profits. The loan officer, with a charismatic style to get the women’s attention, encouraged them not to get too excited but to work harder to repay the loan, while improving their business.
“SCNL, through Rainforest Trust (RFT), is happy to extend the loan to you (women). The money you received is not free, you have to work hard to repay the loan though; it will not be withdrawn from the community, other people must also benefit from it while you repay. Your hard work will encourage SCNL to do more and as you know… use the money wisely and manage it carefully. Women are the backbone of homes, and women are trustworthy people, and I hope you will work hard for the growth of your businesses”.
Musu Kamara, Yallahum, Satta Kamara, Yanohum, Mamai Konneh, Kailahum and Ma Mary Kamara, Pasulahum are all businesswomen. They were among the 90 beneficiaries and appreciated the loan from SCNL and the Rainforest Trust. Satta Kamara has three children and the children’s father passed away years ago. She said things have been different with the family since the children’s father died. Due to the hardships associated with the death of her partner, Kamara dropped out of school to care for her children. She said, “I quit in 8th grade, I have no one to take care of me, and my responsibility; however, I am selling dry goods, and with the loan received from SCNL, I will improve my business and work hard so that SCNL can continue to help me”.
For Mamai Konneh, a mother of three, buying more assets is the best option for growth. “SCNL is going more than well for me. I will buy more goods, sell them, then repay the loan. Money business is tough, seeing an organization like SCNL help us with loans is a big help. I want all women to work together, forget the confusion so that we can improve our businesses and our families”.
Like the rest of Vahum’s women, Jartu Mustapha danced and shouted with delight when she saw her country’s currency, the Liberian dollar, for the first time in years. Due to poor road conditions, people from Vahum travel to neighboring Sierra Leone to transact using Leones. She said, “I am very happy to see Liberian dollars in Vahum. This is the first time I see our Liberian currency. We don’t see our money because of bad roads. We go to Sierra Leone to buy and do business. This loan given to me by SCNL will be used to increase my market and I will work hard to repay the loan. I say to SCNL thank you very much for your help. To the other women, let’s work together to repay the loan.”