Juhudi Kilimo, East Africa
I am a farmer, but I had to open a shop to bring in more money for my family. I am a father of two little girls. It’s my main job now because it produces a lot of income. The coffee I grow is good, but the government pays us very little. The shop has helped me keep up my farm.
I heard about Juhudi from my farmers’ group. They said they were good. I wanted to get a loan to upgrade my shop and improve my farm. I had heard about new products and wanted to get them to sell in my shop. I also wanted to install M-Pesa. For my farm, I needed to upgrade my cows, to sell the one I have and bring in some new ones to increase the production of the milk. My cows produced only about 12 liters a day.
When my farmers’ group talks about Juhudi, we say it’s transparent. You know about your account and how they handle your money. It goes direct to the bank. And it’s easy to take out the loan and receive money. With other lenders or microfinance banks, you can wait for two weeks, sometimes a month, to get your money. With Juhudi, it was three days.
I got a loan of 40,000 shillings ($389) and have begun to put the money into my shop. I will see the outcome by the end of the year. I will be able to be home more with my daughters and my wife. With the money I make, I would like to rear some poultry in the near future.
Maybe in like four of five years, I want to be a big farmer. It is possible now. Now I can see the light.
James, 34, is a father of two girls and a customer of Acumen investee, Juhudi Kilimo.