Purza is 47 years old, married and the mother of two children. She is an Internally Displaced Person (IDP) who lives with her family in an IDP Settlement. She earns a living as a farmer and raises seasonal fruits and vegetables. She has more than 10 years experience in this field, and very skilled at what she does.
Purza usually sells her crops in the town's central bazaar. People in her area shop for fresh vegetables everyday because they believe they are crucial for staying healthy. They are also the basis of many national dishes, such as pilau and dolma. Fresh fruits are also popular to have on the table and are used to make fresh punch. Her monthly income is 80 AZN, but raising crops takes a lot of strength and means lots of time spent working out of doors. That is why Purza relies on help from her son. She is requesting a loan for AZN 1,000 to buy seeds and fertilizer. This will allow her to improve quality of the food she grows and increase her income. This will be her second loan, and she has good client history with our organization.
Aqroinvest Credit Union was founded in 2001 by a group of 32 farmers from Imishli. It has since grown to become the largest credit union in Azerbaijan, owned by its more than 5,400 borrowers and boasting a portfolio of nearly US$12 million.
AqroInvest is focused on providing loans to the following groups of people: rural farmers, people living in distant southern villages with little or no access to finance and internally displaced people and refugees, many of whom lost their homes and livelihoods during the violent conflicts in the 1990s.
In May 2011, Aqroinvest started a new project with Kiva proving higher education loans to students. The project gives students the support and financing they need to continue their education and helps pay for tuition fees at various universities in Azerbaijan. Aqroinvest is the first credit union in the country to offer students loans.