A loan of $850 helped to purchase cloth for a seamstress business and household products for aretail business.

Marie Gabrielle's story

This is a group loan to be shared by the nine women of the Femmes pour la Solidarité et le Développement de Thiaroye (FSDT) association, led by Ms. Marie Gabrielle G.. In their loan application, the group described their business as follows:

“Women occupy an ever greater place in Senegalese society. They regulate home life, are responsible for children's education, and moreover are called on ever more frequently to contribute to the economic resources of the household. This is why the women of our group wish to work together to find opportunities to develop revenue-generating activities. For a start, the group wishes to request a loan of 400,000 francs ($850), a sum which will be shared among the members of our group. Since our association is composed of subgroups with different business activities, the loan will be divided equally between the seamstress groups and the traveling sales groups. The loan will be repaid in monthly installments, to be deposited on the tenth of each month.”

Original French business description:

«La femmes occupe de plus en plus une place importante dans la société sénégalaise elle jouent un rôle de régulatrice au sein du ménage elle est la responsable de l’éducation des enfants mais est appelé de plus en plus a participer à la vie économique du ménage .d’ou le désir des membres femmes pour la solidarité et le développement de chercher des activités génératrices de revenues. Cependant pour un début le groupement souhaite disposer d’un prêt de quatre cent mille francs (400 000f cfa), somme qui sera repartie parmi les membres du dit groupement .Ce groupement étant constituer de sous groupe avec des activités différentes, ce prêt sera partage entre les groupes couture et a celui de commerce à part égale ( eux cent mille franc (200 000 f cfa ) .le remboursement sera mensuelle et se fera le 10 de chaque mois»


Senegal is one of the world’s poorest countries, yet its solid democratic tradition and highly developed associational life distinguish it from other countries in its income group. Especially remarkable are Senegal’s networks of rotating savings and credit associations, known as tontines. Commonly organized by groups of twenty to thirty housewives who live in the same village, the tontines provide poor women throughout the country with small loans to finance modest income-generating activities. Repayment rates within these associations are excellent, because they are based on local reputation and personal trust between the members. However, their financial resources are limited to the contributions of their members, frequently subsistence farmers with very little disposable income. This has prevented the traditional tontines from meeting the demand for rural microenterprise loans and restricted their impact on the economic development of their communities. The SEM Fund works to bridge this gap by linking traditional village credit associations with outside sources of finance.

Loan details

Lenders and lending teams

Loan details