A loan of $10,000 helped to move production and sales to a new location in a commercial area with a larger workshop and a showroom.

Najah's story

Najah is a talented and passionate Iraqi artist and entrepreneur as well as a 38-year-old mother of four. Her journey with handicrafts started very early in life as a hobby, which she further developed by studying fine art at her local college. Though her early marriage—as is the case with many Iraqi women—altered the growth of her art career, it did not derail her passion for handicrafts. While caring for her family and during her only moments to herself, Najah honed her craft from home and sold her products to relatives and neighbors.

Two years ago, as her children were growing older and her family’s expenses were increasing, Najah decided to open a handicrafts workshop outside her home. Now, thanks to her passion for her craft and growing business, in addition to supporting her own family, she employs two other women, thereby enabling them to support their families.

Najah makes beautiful accessories and decor for weddings and social events, specializing in handmade ceramic flowers displayed on plates and in vases. Each life-like sculpture takes approximately six to eight hours to make, and Najah is constantly testing new flowers and innovating her technique. Najah further develops her skills by attending specialized courses and browsing the Internet for inspiration and trends in crafts and art.

To expand her growing business, Najah is taking a SME loan in the amount of 10,000 USD. She will use this loan to move production and sales to a new location in a commercial area with a larger workshop and a showroom to market her one-of-a-kind pieces, an investment that will hopefully drive up sales and inventory. She also plans to hire more women to work with her, training them in her unique craft and economically empowering the women in her community.

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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Loan details