Impacting lives in peri-urban areas

Elizabeth Ngosa is a married woman of Kapiri Mposhi District in Central Province of Zambia. In 2009, Elizabeth’s husband had a stroke which left half of his body paralyzed and therefore, incapable of executing his duties at work. Consequently, Elizabeth’s husband was retired on medical grounds and left Elizabeth with no option but to venture into business in order to provide for home needs and medication for her husband.

Thus, Elizabeth started selling vegetables at a local market and later on switched to second hand clothes.  However, due to low profit margins, both businesses did not appeal to Elizabeth as she could barely afford to provide for home basic needs and later on the much needed medication for her husband.

Elizabeth therefore, gave another shot to a different kind of business that of selling fish. Due to high returns, fish trading is a common business in Kapiri Mposhi town especially among widows and elderly women. However, Elizabeth did not have enough capital to invest in the fish business in order to earn profits that she could be content with.

Therefore, in 2012, the mother of four started working with FINCA to grow her business. Elizabeth recalls that she used her first FINCA loan of K400 (US$20) to buy a variety of fish. With that first loan, Elizabeth witnessed a significant increase in her profits and since then, she has been investing all her FINCA subsequent loans in her fish business.

Two years down the line, Elizabeth is more than happy with the profits she is earning as she is able to provide all home needs, children’s school needs and medication for her husband. However, as age is catching up with her, Elizabeth is now planning to open up a grocery stall in the near future so that she can stop travelling out of town to order fish.