Beatrice rests her elbows on the counter in her small ‘duka’ (shop), chatting with the women who come to buy a bag of sugar or a pouch of seasoning. “This is one of the most popular items,” Beatrice notes. “It is small but I sell many in a day!”

Beatrice has just completed her first year in the micro-finance loan program. “The loan has helped me to buy more products for my store and I now have my own goat.”

On Saturday mornings, Beatrice packs up the supplies from her store and heads for the local market.  She is quick to share some of her challenges where sometimes the car she hires breaks down or the competition. But Beatrice works hard and people appreciate her jovial spirit. She is proud her success and looks forward to year 2 in the loan program.


On the main street in Longido, strategically placed near where the motorcyclists gather, Elinaisha owns a parts store to repair motorcycles. When you enter her shop, she greets you from behind a counter in a space filled with automotive parts. She points to tires and plugs  and light bulbs and more, naming them off as she points. Clients bring a list of what is required and she orders the parts that she does not carry from Arusha.

Elinaisha worked from home at first, but since she opened her shop on the main street six years ago, her business has grown.  She works alone although her children help out on school holidays. With the help of a TEMBO micro-finance loan, Elinaisha was able to expand her stock and pay for rent. If she could grow bigger, she would add service and parts for cars and trucks and for gutas (three-wheeled motorized vehicles).


Adelina’s tailoring shop is a family affair. Working alongside her husband, Adelina, who learned to sew from friends, has been in business for five years. Inside the crowded shop, she works on two sewing machines, both hand operated. Her husband sews on the porch while family members use a charcoal-filled iron at a crowded table in the corner.

With the help of a loan from TEMBO, Adelina was able to buy material to sew school uniforms. She is proud that her business is growing with the increasing demand for school uniforms and pants and dresses for the community.

What does she charge to sew uniforms? Pants are 8000 Tsh (about $4.50) and skirts 6000Tsh (about $3.50).