Mariam is 40 years old, and lives with her husband and seven children in a two-room, dirt-floor home in Abu Qirqas in Egypt. A year ago, her family had no income. Mariam’s husband had suffered an injury that left him unable to work. When he borrowed money to pay for food, he found himself with debts so severe that he was sent to prison.
Forced to support her family on her own, Mariam learned how to run a business through a series of workshops offered by the Future Eve Foundation (FEF), one of Alfanar’s investees. When she completed her training, FEF gave Mariam a microloan. In one of the two rooms of her house, Mariam has now set up a shop selling biscuits, juice and other staples to farm workers and neighbours. This business has allowed Mariam to feed her family, and has inspired her to expand the enterprise. She will also pass on the training she received to her daughters, who will learn how to bake and sell sweets.
“I have been able to manage my life,” she says, “And I am profitable.”