UPDATE: New Baraka Self-Help Group

We have received the six-month report from our sponsored project with Right Sharing of World Resources, New Baraka Self Help Group in Siaya, Kenya.  Also, they sent some pictures and a little information about three of the beneficiaries.

The report gives some details outlining the successes and challenges that they had in getting this project underway.  You can see from the report that a major challenge was the Kenyan economy, which continues to be sluggish, with high inflation.  The RSWR Kenya groups are trying to work around the economy by keeping low stock and diversifying what they sell, so they can make maximum profit.  I was encouraged to see that all 25 of the women repaid their first loan – and the second loans that they gave were not so high that it will be difficult for the women to repay them.  This group seems to be going forward cautiously, which, I think, is the best strategy, given the state of the Kenyan economy right now.

The report is handwritten and it is easy to read. For the website, I have transcribed the contents. The second document contains pictures of three of the women beneficiaries and gives a little bit of information about each one.  The pictures are really great and give an insight into daily life in Kenya.
When you are reading the report, one bit of information you might need is the exchange rate between the euro and the Kenyan shilling.  It is €1 = 168 shillings. So, when it says the women received loans of Ksh.10,000, that is approximately €60.

Thanks are due to Sarah Northrop of Right Sharing of World Resources, who keeps us informed of the activities of this group

Right Sharing of World Resources

6 Month project reporting form, Kenya

Name Address and email of your organization
New Baraka Self Help Group PO Box45 406 Selfgroupbarakanew@yahoo.com

What training did the women in your group receive?
They received training on entrepreneurship, voluntary learning and saving and also record keeping.
Who facilitated the training?
The training was facilitated by social service
What date did you give your first loans?
01 August 2023
How many women received first loans?
how much did each woman receive?
10,000 Kenyan Shilling, (about € 60.00) (1 Kenyan Shilling equals 0.0063 Euro)
How many women have repaid their first loans?
How many women have received their second loans so far?
What is the amount of the second loans ?
15,000 Kenyan Shilling
How many have repaid their second loans?
They are still within the stipulated time for the second loan
Are there ways you changed the programme from the initial plans?
What difficulties have individual women faced in implementing their businesses?
The economy of Kenya has fluctuated. This has made the currency flow to be reduced.
overestimating the business strength, hence leading to challenges in the stocking of the merchandise.

What has the group done to assist the women who have had difficulties?
The group has encouraged them to diversify their business.
What difficulties has the group faced in implementing the project?
The members have had unavoidable family needs such as renovation of houses, paying school fees for their children and some also used the money to seek medical services.

How do you intend to remedy the difficulties?
Embrace more training on how to run a successful income generating business. Encourage members to identify viable businesses and market. To learn by benchmarking, with successful groups and individuals. 
Describe how your group helps the members save money for future emergency needs?
We are determined to improve on the kind of business each woman is undertaking through SWOT analysis so that to improve by adding value to our businesses. Members are determined to bring changes economically to the family.
How much does each woman save each month?
About 350 Kenyan Shilling (about €2.24 ) (March 2024)

Individual Stories



MARGARET is a widow with five children, she bought three new school uniforms for her children who had torn uniforms.
Business Type: Grocery.
Her business feeds her family, pays school fees, pays group contributions and pays monthly health insurance which covers the family’s medical expenses.
She is happy with the loan she received from RSWR which has empowered her economically.

NAME:                       SYPROSE ATIENO
AGE:                           55 YEARS

SYPROSE is married and has 7 children with 3 grandchildren.
For now, she takes care of 4 children and 3 grandchildren.
Business type: Selling Mitumba clothes.

(Mitumba is a Swahili term, literally meaning “bundles”, used to refer to plastic-wrapped packages of used clothing donated by people in wealthy countries. The term is also applied to the clothing that arrives in these bundles.)

So far she has borrowed up to third loan which has made her increase the stock.The business feeds her family, pays medication, and school fees and pays group contributions. She was also able to buy school shoes for her 2 school-going children.
Syprose is happy with the loan she received from RSWR, which brought tremendous changes economically to the family.

NAME:                       SERPHINE AWINO
AGE:                           40 YEARS

Business Type:  Poultry and animal feeds

SERPHINE is a single mother with two school-going children.
She is the group secretary who is instrumental to the group’s welfare as a team leader making sure there is harmony and cohesiveness.

Giving a little helps a lot