A loan of $525 helped purchase of firewood.

Fatoumata's story

Mrs. Fatoumata Traoré is 28 years old and lives with her husband and 3 children in a monogamous family in Sido Soninkoura, one of the outlying neighborhoods in the town of Segou (the fourth economic area of Mali).

She never attended school due to social reasons. Very quickly she started a business to generate an income, more specifically,for the last three years, she has been selling firewood. For the last 3 years, she has had a relationship with the organization Soro Yiriwaso. After having completed 3 group loans (interdependent loans) with a neighborhood association, she is applying for her first individual loan. All the previous loans have been repaid on time.

She gets her firewood supply on Segou's plaza and sometimes in the surrounding villages (such as Kélékou). She buys from farmers well known in the trade. She plans on using this loan to buy 5 truck loads of firewood.

She sells from her home day and night (because she uses a space set aside where the wood is stored, sheltered form the rain).
Mrs. Fatoumata Traoré sells retail and wholesale mostly to women and bakers who buy on credit that is repayable weekly. Her advantage in this business is that she has no competition because she is the only seller of firewood in her neighborhood. She is planning on making a monthly profit of 115.000 FCFA which will allow her to both repay the loan and invest the rest in her activity. Her ambition is to diversify her activity by opening a shop selling various items.

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Translated from French by Kiva volunteer Veronique Fourment

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