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Hawa's story

Hawa’s Story
21/07/2017 Claire James

Here at Action on Poverty our ethos is about being able to provide opportunities to create lasting livelihood for those living in poverty. Giving people access to loans, training and skills equipping them to become self-sufficient and less dependent on support

Hawa is a Mother in Sierra Leone- with 4 children (3 boys & a girl) one child is in secondary and two are in primary education. Hawa became a member of her local Community Based Organisation (CBO) in 2015, as a means to see what financial assistance was available to her; with the aim of helping her financing a new enterprise, baking bread and marketing it.  As a gardener on a vegetable farm, she wanted to find an alternative source of income to farming; that wasn’t seasonal and allowed her the opportunity to a sustainable income all year round.


Hawa at home


Seasonal farming affects people having a sustainable income

Following her involvement in the CBO, Hawa gained access to the loan she needed and set about creating her vision of a bread baking and marketing business; which she spends around 70% of her time on. Gaining a more stable and irradiating the seasonality of her income too. Providing stability to her life and dramatically increasing her yearly income; eradicating the worry and fear of not being able to provide for her family.

“This enterprise had grown so well that I am always recognised and appreciated by my husband.”

Our partners at MAPCO have helped us reach many different communities and people like Hawa. Providing them with loans which can be in the form of money or seeds and we’re delighted that this model is one that has a return on investment and means that we can help more than 1 person following a repayment. These loans are an important part of allowing communities and individuals to find a way to escape poverty and build sustainable and lasting livelihoods and allow dreams to become a reality.

Thanks to her new project Hawa has dramatically increased her income. Before becoming a part of her local CBO she earned on average SLL 400,000 a year/ season; however, her new enterprise has seen her earn a DAILY income of SLL 25,000; meaning her previously yearly earning are now earnable in less than a month. A dramatic and extraordinary life changing happening and something that as our supporters, you held us to achieve.

“I take [a] lead in household decision[s] with regards [to] the welfare of the children.”

Not only has this now meant that Hawa has a better income; her position within the household has changed, now she brings so much to the family’s money pot.  Hawa is now playing an important role in household decisions, taking the lead on choices surrounding the children, their education and the number of meals they eat a day. Which is now much less of a worry than it once was and provides the children to gain the most out of their education, as they’re not hungry going to school anymore.

Action on Poverty are leading the way, creating lasting change that helps to build livelihoods and transforms lives. Hawa is just one of the people that we have helped; however, there are many more who require our help and support to build sustainable livelihoods. All of which is only possible with your help.

We’re proud of all we have achieved over the years and look forward to continuing our work in this area, but without your support; we can’t continue our work and help even more people like Hawa.

If you’re able to help us then please click here and donate what you can.


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