A loan of $1,850 helped a member to buy building materials such as tin sheets, planks, nails, and water proof wall paper and to pay labor charges.

Saving Life Group's story

In 2010, five like- minded tribal women from Sirou village in the state of Manipur in the northeastern part of India came together to form a group called Saving Life. They guide and help one another to empower themselves in their businesses and help improve their lives. Hence, the “saving life” concept was born.

The one with her hand raised is Zaniang and she is the group leader. She is 43 years old and a mother of two daughters and one son. She lives in a rented room with her two children. In 2007, her husband was electrocuted and died. Since then, she has looked after her children alone and shouldered the responsibility of marrying off her eldest daughter and providing an education for the younger siblings. Her main source of income comes from working as a quarry worker. It takes at least five days to quarry sand to sell from the river bed. Life was not very easy for her until she and her friends came together to help one another
With experience from her quarry work and her first loan of INR 5,000, she began to supply sand to contractors undertaking construction work. This was the turning point in her life. In due course, she became known to contractors of varying grades. Apart from the sand, she also supply bricks and cement as required and demanded. She is very happy that her children are attending school and hopes that they will get a white color job for their career. She also plans and wishes that someday soon she will have a house of her own.

Now she needs another loan to construct a small godown (warehouse) to stock cement. She will use the loan to buy building materials such as tin sheets, planks, nails, and waterproof wallpaper and to pay labor charges. Having said this, she plans to stock and sell cement at all times. She believes that she will do well in her business because of the good will that she already earned among the builders in and around town.

Likewise, the rest of the members are also working very hard to supplement their respective family incomes. With the festival season looming ahead, they need another loan to supplement their stock in their garment sales and charcoal businesses.

In this group: Nemneichong, Zelkhoman, Manvung, Chinglianmoi, Zaniang

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