Monica Patrick is married with three children, and lives in Makazi Village in the Sikonge District of Tanzania.
After having been identified by the Promoting Sustainable Practices to Eradicate Child Labour in Tobacco (PROSPER) project, funded by the ECLT Foundation as a strong candidate for its loan beneficiary program, she received a loan of 190,000 Tanzanian Shillings (TZS). Improving rural household income and families’ financial planning is part of PROSPER’s strategy to find a sustainable method to reduce child labor in the Sikonge District of Tanzania.
Receiving the loan has proven critical towards Monica developing the necessary income to withdraw her children from working at tobacco farms and send them to school instead. Now, Monica has the resources to pursue two different income-generating activities:
- Produce and sell clothing
- Cultivate the land she owned: one acre of maize and two acres of rice and groundnuts
She used the funds from these activities to purchase fabric and fertilizer. This past year, the combination of selling clothes and agricultural products resulted in enough income for her to not only send her children to school, but for her to construct a house for herself and her family.
She bought iron sheets at 400,000 TZS to create a modern roof for her house, which has four rooms and a sitting room. She was able to buy other wooden materials that cost 100,000 TZS, wood and sheet nails for 20,000 TZS, construction labour for the mason 50,000 TZS, and other minor costs including transportation of materials. Making and preparation of soil bricks and collection of sand water for construction was done by her family.
Because of PROSPER, Monica’s children are enjoying the new home and attending school. She anticipates using further profit to diversify her businesses by investing in a retail shop, as well as continuing with her current business of selling fabric and investing in agriculture-related activities.