Empowerment Loans Benefit Over 15,000 City Women, Youth

 A total of 15,388 women and youths from 2,978 groups in Ilala Municipality have benefited from economic empowerment revolving funds issued by DCB Commercial Bank Plc.

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DCB managing director Godfrey Ndalahwa said a total of Sh9.6 billion had already been borrowed by women and youth groups involved in various economic activities.

The revolving fund, of which Sh2 billion was injected into DCB Bank in 2014, has grown to Sh21 billion, which is more than 1,000 per cent growth. Mr Ndalahwa said the funds are not only benefiting Ilala Municipality but all municipalities of Dar es Salaam city of which three are main shareholders of the bank.

“We train beneficiaries on how to save and become bankable,” he said.

Ms Leah Mathias, one of the beneficiaries of the fund, said she first borrowed Sh500,000 two years ago and the loan has grown to Sh5 million.

“The loans borrowed have helped to improve my product, maintain my family and buy materials for liquid soap making business,” she said.

However, she said the municipal should increase the ceiling for empowerment loans to more than Sh5 million as currently she is no longer qualified.

She also advised the change of repayment schedules to monthly basis rather than currently weekly basis.

Mr Alexander Mndanga of Ilala Vijana Saccos said the empowerment loan has helped to create self-employment among its members of which has reduced their dependence.

The society, which has 45 members, is currently involved with different economic activities includes shoes making, peanut butter and soap making, arts and drawing, food processing and tea processing.

Ilala District Commissioner Sophia Mjema said the government will continue to support women and youths to improve and start their businesses and small industries.

Source: allafrica.com

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