A loan of $775 helped to meet her customers' demands by expanding her charcoal inventory.


Sheila's story

Sheila A. A. is a 38-year-old married woman and the mother of three children, all of whom are currently in school. For a living, she trades in charcoal. Notably, charcoal is a very popular source of energy for cooking in many traditional Ghanaian homes. Due to the success of her business, she was able to support her first child through senior high school. Sheila obtains her supply of charcoal from the surrounding villages of Tema, and she then resells such charcoal to her customers for a profit.



Unfortunately, her working capital (which was provided by her husband) is inadequate to enable her to purchase the large quantities of charcoal needed to meet her customers’ demands. As a result, her sales and profit margins have been rather limited in recent months. Now, she is seeking a loan to purchase a bulk supply of charcoal in order to increase her charcoal inventory, and because she plans to start selling gari and maize to supplement her income (and thus needs capital to kickstart that line of business). She believes that the loan proceeds will enable her to increase her savings so that she can pay for her children's educational needs.



Sheila is a member of the community group known as The Voice Trust Group. In this group, members guarantee each other's loans as social collateral (i.e., if one member does not promptly repay her portion of the loan, then the other members are responsible for curing the arrears), and they provide support for one another to repay their respective loans. She notes that she does not sell anything on days when her group meets, and that her picture was taken during her group meeting.


Loan details


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Loan details