Rukia is 27 years old and lives in the village of Kitanda in Southern Tanzania. She heard about the Hoja income generation programme at a village meeting. Rukia borrowed 50,000TSH (£20) to help her to start her business in 2011, a small restaurant providing traditional Tanzanian food in the village.
The restaurant provides her with a sustainable source of income which she uses to support herself and her daughter, Husna, earning enough to send her to school and provide food to keep her healthy.
To supplement the income from her restaurant, Rukia has also started to grow rice. Rukia is able to produce 12 bags a year selling for 70,000TSH (approximately £25) each.
Having the independence to start out on her own and pay off the loan herself makes her happy. Without the loan from Hoja, Rukia would not have been able to open the restaurant as she lacked the capital required for a bank loan.
“I always wanted to open a restaurant so I used the loan to rent a building and buy crockery and cutlery, as well as rice and beans to start selling.”
Rukia has applied for another loan of 200,000Tsh (approximately £80) so she can expand her business.