Siham is a 60-yea- old widow from the Negev. Siham scraped by with welfare for many years until she decided to open a business activity from her home and nearby area. She started by selling treats, sweets and toys from her house and near the local elementary schools during breaks and at the end of the school day. A couple of years ago, she began selling these trinkets and clothes in an area near the city market. Gradually she has expanded her business and focused on clothing and in-demand items. Siham has seen her business provide a steady income and grow gradually over the last couple of years. She has grown out of her current location and is ready to move to a stall in the nearby souk, an open-air market.
Siham needed this loan to expand her business, move into a stall at the city market and for additional stock. This will ensure her a larger clientele and steadier income.
Siham wants to continue to manage her business. She hopes to begin saving steadily to ensure a safety net for herself and her family.
Koret Israel Economic Development Funds (KIEDF) launched its direct lending program, SAWA, in 2006 to help low-income and unemployed populations within Israel create independent income-generating activities. SAWA currently serves Bedouin women in the Negev, Arab Israeli women in northern Israel and Jewish Israeli women. SAWA loans support a wide variety of small business types including consumer goods sales, grocery stores, animal raising, hairdressing, sewing, and day care. SAWA continues to grow and serve new populations while maintaining a loss rate of less than 3%.