SMALL BUSINESS LOANS
Youth of Malawi has given several loans to villagers to start businesses, with varying degrees of success.
We began a tailoring business for local women but quickly learned that equipment alone without training was insufficient. Our tailors are now in a government program so that they can acquire the skills they need to make clothing. We began a successful seed trading business with several men from the village and they have quadrupled our initial investment in them. We’ve begun two hair businesses, one for men and one for women, and believe they will be successful and flourish in the coming months and years. Finally, with a simple $100 loan from a 12 year old American donor named Felix Warn, we started a small chicken farm and expect a good yield beginning mid-year.
Youth of Malawi employees a “pay it forward” loan arrangement whereby successful debtors pay back their loans to a community bank, without interest. The loan amounts that returned are immediately lent back out to new entrepreneurs who have convinced the loan committee that their ideas and business plans have a high chance of success.