In Cameroon, a few hundred dollars can make a huge difference in building a future for a needy family.

Bread and Water for Africa® through its partner in Cameroon, Hope Services, began a pilot micro-loan program providing small loans – and that’s exactly what they are, loans to be paid back — to ten widows and an orphan last year.

And the result has been remarkable. For example, two widows from Bamenda who did a small scale business funded in large part by these loans have already completely paid off their loans, as have another six newly successful business owners in Bangolan.

And the loans plant seeds!  Ngo Yerga Julienne, a widow who started a business sewing and selling dresses, and is now volunteering to be an educator and share ideas with other widows to empower them on the future management of their loans.

Another loan recipient, Ngenngu Mispa, a 38-year-old mother of four, had no occupation before the loan, but after starting a small business selling beans, she is able to pay her children’s school fees. And another, Bafon Grace, a 54-year-old mother of seven, was able to obtain the capital necessary to start  her business of selling fried flour mixed with eggs to not only also pay her children’s school fees, but regularly pay her household bills, ensure her family is well-fed, and even carry out charity work.

And other micro-loan recipients have started a variety of successful businesses including rice farming, groundnuts, colanuts, palm oil, petrol and kerosene, shoe sales, cassava and bean farming, fish sales and even pig farming.

“On behalf of the beneficiaries, we are indeed grateful,” stated Hope Services executive director Esther Ndichafah who administers the micro-loan program in Yaounde, Cameroon.

And we here at Bread and Water for Africa® are most thankful to our generous supporters and appreciative of your contributions of where even a small amount of money can make a life-changing difference for many African families who are not looking for a handout, but a hand up.