“The biggest challenge I faced was not earning enough money to cover the cost of renting a room and my children’s education fees,” Marini says.
Marini’s a mother-of-three from Indonesia. Like many mothers living in poverty, her biggest desire was to see her children get a full education. But because she couldn’t earn enough to cover costs such as food, clean water and rent, this was nearly impossible.
A new study by the World Bank has assessed the impact of small loans on families living in poverty in Bangladesh. The study tracked the progress of more than 1,500 families over 20 years and the results demonstrate why your support is so important to mothers like Marini. Just a 10% increase in women’s borrowing improves the school enrolment of children by 8% and reduces extreme poverty by 5%.
For Marini, a small loan of Rp.750,000 (A$72) meant she was able to buy rice and other ingredients in bulk to start a food stall.
“Now I am able to save some money for my children and any emergency needs,” she says. “My biggest wish is that my children have a bright future, that they can get a good job. With my income getting better, I can send all my children to university.”
The World Bank study concluded that small loans have a significant positive effect in raising household welfare, consumption, assets and net worth. For mothers like Marini, what’s most important is that this means they can put food on the table and send their children to school.