Ms Sajida is a 40-year-old married woman and a mother of eight children. She has been in the business of glove making for five years. The boy shown in the photo is Sajida’s son, who also assists her in this activity of glove stitching. Five years ago Kashf team members approached a family of 10 subsisting on a very low income per month. The bread winner of the family was employed as a daily wage laborer at a cloth factory that was known to be exploiting its workers. The family was suffering from major financial challenges when Sajida, who was then a housewife, decided to take her first loan. She used this money to purchase material that was required to stitch gloves.
Desperate to support her children who were growing up without going to school, Sajida took her gloves to the market and sold them at a minimal price. Buyers liked her gloves and demanded more. While talking to the Kashf team recently she was delighted to share her business experience and how she has been able to financially progress because of a healthy relationship with Kashf. She said she worried because unlike many other children in her neighborhood her sons and daughters were unable to attend school. Now, as her business is growing and she is able to establish a stable clientele, her children are attending school.
She is been in association with Kashf for five years. She has shown excellent repayment behavior. At present, she has requested a loan of 45,000 PKR to buy winter fabric and leather in large quantities to meet with the increasing demand. She hopes to earn large profits due to the increase in sales during the winter season. She dreams of building her own house and wishes to spend part of the income on the betterment of the family.
About Kashf Foundation
Kashf Foundation is one of the leading microfinance providers in Pakistan, focused on expanding financial access for poor women across the country. The organization’s economic empowerment program has grown from 913 clients in 1999 to 284,653 clients as of May 2012, with a current outstanding portfolio of US$32 million.
Kashf has trained over 227,000 clients in basic financial literacy and systemized financial education since 2010, in addition to providing training in gender justice and empowerment to over 12,500 participants since 2011. This group includes clients, their husbands and adolescent boys in their communities.
Over the past 16 years, Kashf has disbursed an estimated 2 million loans. Today, it operates in 16 districts in Punjab province and 1 district in Sindh province through a network of 157 branches. It plans to open 19 new branches to cover all four of Pakistan’s provinces.