Ms. Rafiqa is 43 years old and a vigorous, married woman. She has been in the work of hand-embroidery for the past 15 years. She is passionate about her work, and client demand is strong. She offers special designs for the occasion of weddings. But business challenges, combined with family expenditures, frustrate her nearly every day. Her husband is a labor person, and he does not earn enough to support his family well. With the passage of time, Rafiqa's embroidery patterns became popular on her street and in a nearby market, and she is the best earning resource in her household.
She is a mother of four children and is responsible for providing them with good quality food, heath and education. She wants to grow her business, so she requested a loan of 20,000 Rs. (Pakistan rupees) to buy raw materials such as fabric, threads, sequins and pearls in large quantities to meet the increasing demand.
She shared her dream of running a training center for girls of her community. She would like to teach them embroidery skills, so they can help her expand her business, and also earn money for themselves. She is also interested in opening her own shop in the market to display her work.
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.