Lydia is the Chairperson of Masese I Child Protection Team in Uganda. She is also a ‘Lead Storyteller’ for her community. She'd like to introduce Nakimuli Scovia, who benefited from the Children on the Edge Africa education loan programme.
INTRODUCING NAKIMULI SCOVIA
Lydia, one of our Lead Storytellers in Uganda works with 34 year old Nakimuli Scovia, who separated from her husband while staying in Kamuli district, and came to live at her aunt’s home in Masese I, with her three children. Lydia says:
“Her aunt welcomed her and hosted her with her children for a while, but advised Scovia to think about being independent because her aunt also had her own large family to take care of.
Scovia started doing casual labour at the landing site (edge of the lake) where she got some money and saved up. This enabled her to open up a vegetable stall and rent a small room where she moved to with her children. During this time, she made friends with one of our Child Protection Team members called Amuge Teddy.
Though Scovia had started a home and had a small business in place, what she was earning was not enough to cater for her family’s basic needs, and during her conversations with Teddy, she mentioned how her earnings were low and the hardship she was facing in raising the children.
Teddy introduced her to me, and I encouraged Scovia to apply for our education fund programme. After a visit from the loans officer, she was taken through loans and business training, and came up with an idea of selling charcoal alongside her vegetable stall. She was given a loan, and after investing it in her new business, Scovia’s daily income rose to 5000 UGX (around £1.10) a day compared to the 2000 UGX (44 pence) she used to earn before. She looks happy at the moment and is stable at her home.”
‘Education loans’ are what we call our small business loan scheme, which has the aim of helping parents create reliable incomes, so they can care for their children and afford school fees in Uganda. Small loans are offered to participants, with full support and training given as they set up or expand their small businesses.
As the economy is now fully open and all Covid restrictions lifted, participants in this scheme have been able to access market areas and source merchandise for their businesses again in recent months. 103 loans are currently running, with monthly visits from Children on the Edge staff to see how businesses are progressing, and collect weekly repayments.