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How Margret Lifted Her Family Out of Poverty

I love telling my story because it is a story of winning; it’s a story of success despite the odds.

My name is Margret and I live in Gulu, a city in Northern Uganda.

A few years ago, I was a stay at home wife. But my husband’s job alone could not provide for our family’s basic needs. With a household of eight—me, my husband, our four children, and my sister’s two children—one income was not enough.

Every morning, I would ask my husband for money for food, medication, and other daily needs. I could see the frustration in his eyes and sense the financial burden that was weighing on him.

So, one day in 2016, I decided to ask him for capital to start a small business.

He gave me 50,000 Ugandan Shillings, or about $14 USD; with this I decided to open a business selling tomatoes in the local market. I used $7 to secure a market stall. However, the remaining $7 was not enough to purchase a stock of tomatoes. So, I borrowed another $7 from a friend to buy a half box of tomatoes to resell.

I was excited to have a business of my own, but I was struggling to make it profitable.

Eventually, after months of work, I was forced to close down—losing both my hope and the $14 my husband gave me.

However, several months later, my hope was renewed when I learned about a program offered by Talanta Finance—a partner of Partners Worldwide—that provides women like me with free business skills training. After completing the training, we would be eligible for a loan to start a business.

The next morning, I went straight to Talanta’s offices to learn more!

I enrolled in the training right away and began dreaming of opening a small retail shop. I shared my idea with Mr. Francis, a Talanta staff member, who encouraged me to pursue it. With the little savings I had, and a loan of $140 USD from Talanta, I opened the business. And I never looked back!

I feel that God was with me because the business worked out so well that I managed to pay back the loan on time. I applied for a second loan of $216 USD, of which I used half to buy a cow—another source of income—and the other half to reinvest in my retail business.

With my business growing, my husband and I have been able to start building a new home for our family. My prayer is to complete the house by December 2018 so that we no longer have to pay rent and we can finally have a place to call home.

Today, we are no longer poor, and we can meet all our family’s needs. My husband and I are happier in our marriage than ever before too, and he no longer has to bear the financial burden alone.

I really thank God for bringing Talanta and Partners Worldwide into our lives!