A loan of $5,000 helped to improve the workshop by renovating it, expanding it, and buying a new sewing machine, and a small generator.


Wafaa's story

Wafa is a small business owner in south Iraq. An ambitious entrepreneur, despite traditional roles and cultural norms, she started her business at the age of 42. With limited career options due to cultural restrictions and domestic constraints, Wafa is one of the many Iraqi woman who is working from home, using her sewing skills to generate some income and participate in meeting the financial needs of her family. Wafa is now 47 years old, a mother of five children. Since her divorce she provides for the family alone. She started her business on a very small scale five years ago and since than it has been steadily growing, attracting new clients, adding new services, and additional machines to her work-space. Wafa is living in the south of Iraq where, despite relative stability over the past years, conflicts, safety and security issues still complicate life. But Wafa is determined to provide for her family and works hard in her sewing shop day after day. As the pictures show, she mostly works on dresses for women, making the typical home ware dresses that are usually colorful, comfortable and decorated with work-intense details. Wafa started her business five years ago and since than it has been steadily growing attracting new clients with her detailed oriented, quality work. Although her business is still relatively small, her hard work and the potential for growth qualifies her to participate in the WLIFT project and also take a business loan from Relief International Microfinance Iraq. She would like to use her loan of $5000 to improve the workshop by renovating it, expanding it, and buying a new sewing machine, and a small generator - all to ensure she can work more efficiently, plan her work better, and provide better and faster services. In addition, she also plans to buy some nice quality fabrics and raw materials with the remaining amount after purchasing the larger goods. Based on the political and social challenges of lending in Iraq, personally identifiable information about this borrower has been altered for their protection. RI-Iraq appreciates Kiva lenders' consideration of these challenges and encourages lenders to continue their support for Iraqi borrowers.



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