Evace Kemirembe is an experienced market-stall holder in the community of Buhoma, with a regular and large customer base who visit daily to buy their food supplies. She sells rice, tomatoes, beans, onions, potatoes and bananas to members of Mukona parish, community hospital employees and the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) Rangers, in order to support herself and the three of her five children that are still living at home with her.
Providing for her family is her key focus. Now divorced from her husband Evace was facing the serious conditions of poverty and the only feasible way out was to look to expand the business and grow her income.
There was only one way that Evace could consider doing this and that was by taking a loan. Finding a low cost loan can be challenging as interest rates are typically too high to manage and for those with little money, there are often few assets available to secure a loan. Finding a guarantor can also be hard.
Ride 4 a Woman provides low interest micro-credit loans to the women of Bwindi to help with exactly this situation. The programme has largely been devised by the membership of R4W – built by them, for them; a living working example of women empowering themselves for independence and success. And it’s working!
Evace took a loan of three million Ugandan shillings just a few months ago and the returns on investment are already providing the income to support the school fees of all her children.
Evace has a determined and entrepreneurial spirit; she is confident in her work and in the loyalty of her regular, daily customer base. She knows where to go to get the best deals on her supplies and so is more than capable of building on her success.
Evace has been a member of Ride 4 a Woman since its inception in 2009. She has a lot of positive things to say about the organization: “With R4W we have been able to put past challenges behind us and we now have so much hope for the future. It’s a great relief to have removed the financial pressure; we can focus positively on surviving today and on the future. I am very happy and proud to be a member of R4W and part of an organization that offers so much community support, not only in the way of low interest micro-loans but also providing safe water to the community, sponsorships to children, and even our own branded R4W T-shirts and dancing skirts – it is an identity I am very proud of.”