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Rabia Mwakasaka’s New Beginning

By Sonja Egeland Kelly

As we jump into 2010 with both feet, I am reminded of Rabia Mwakasaka’s story.

Rabia is a widow with three children. Before she came to Opportunity Tanzania, she worked out of her home, but could not seem to make ends meet. She didn’t have the capital to buy large quantities of raw materials, so business was difficult. She lamented that she was unable to send her children to school or to properly feed them.

Upon her introduction to Opportunity, however, she discovered a new beginning for herself and her family. With a first loan of only $300, she was able to buy the materials to jump start her clothing business. She became a role model in her community, and continued to expand her business. Eventually, she took on additional staff members and now is a wholesale exporter in Tanzania. Her most recent loan was for $1,500.

The best part of Rabia’s story is that she can now afford to send her three children to school and feed them nutritious meals. She even has enough money left over to support extended family members. Through her success with Opportunity, she owns a vehicle to ease her personal and business transportation.

The new year offers each of us a chance to make a fresh start. May we have the same enthusiasm and zeal as Rabia had when she received her first loan.

Happy New Year from all of us at Opportunity International.

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