Mambo (Greetings!) from Tanzania! Pictured here is 36 years old Tatu M. from Mbeya. She is married with three children who are between the ages of three and 10.
Tatu has been running a business selling used clothes since 1997. Second-hand clothes journey across the oceans from America and Europe, and are then washed, ironed and sold in bulk by wholesalers in Dar es Salaam to retailers. These retailers then re-wash and re-iron them for sale on the streets of Dar es Salaam and the surrounding towns and villages. These clothes are becoming increasingly popular, especially amongst the younger generation, because of their low cost. Furthermore, western or modern clothing is becoming more appealing Some argue that the popularity of the West’s cast-offs is damaging the local cloth and garment industry. There are many people who still appreciate the beauty of traditional Tanzanian dress, however the growing market in used clothing and its importance to many micro-entrepreneurs cannot be denied.
She works at the business for nine to 12 hours per day, six days per week and is assisted by one employee and one family member. Tatu currently earns about 60USD a month from her business. She is requesting a loan of 375USD in order to purchase more used clothes in bulk. In the future, she plans to increase the quantity of clothes and to open another business. Tatu thanks you for your support!
SELFINA has taken a lead role as a pioneer of micro-credit in Tanzania through Micro-Leasing. The organization is engaged in the economic empowerment of women in Tanzania through the provision of a leasing and leaseback microfinance facility. Customs and traditions in Tanzania make it difficult for women to own land and assets, thus they are termed non-creditworthy by financial institutions. This leads to poor financial support and poor access to basic needs and services for women with low incomes. One of the primary advantages of micro leasing is that is allows clients to use the equipment as collateral for future loans with SELFINA, thus enabling them to borrow larger sums in the future.