Since our partner Thandanani introduced self-help groups, participants have been reporting on just how they are helping to improve their lives. They also received basic financial training and have been pleased and surprised at the difference saving just R2 (10p) a week can make.

From providing small amounts of cash to cover  urgently needed repairs to seed funding for new community micro-entreprises like food gardens and beaded jewellery, our finance groups are starting to benefit vulnerable families in the local area.

Mrs Mhlongo* shares her story “Before joining the group my house was falling apart but now I have been able to borrow money from the group and have repaired my home. My house is now safe and dry and my children are warm.” The loan was issued at an affordable interest rate and repayment terms and has now been paid off. The “group management” of the loan system helps ensure that the loans made by the group are not excessive, that the repayments are affordable and that they are repaid on time.