Claire, Assilassimé beneficiary in Togo
In LOMÉ, with our programme ASSILASSIMÉ
The shopkeeper has gained confidence and is now able to make savings!
Claire was born 34 years ago in a village called Badougbé, 50kms from Lomé. She moved to Lomé when she was 3 years old, and she still lives there now. At the moment, she rents a house in the Tokoin Novissi area with her husband, who works as a refrigeration engineer, and their three children.
In 2009, Claire started selling sugar, peanuts and manioc with just 2,000 CFA francs (€3) in her pocket. Her husband supported her financially so that she could develop her small shop. Today, she also sells vegetables, basic necessities, and fruit juices that she makes herself and which she can keep in the refrigerator that her husband bought for her.
A brave and determined woman
Claire’s days are very busy! Once she has finished her domestic tasks, she opens the shop that she rents in front of her house. Her shop is open from 6 am to 8 pm and she only closes the shop between 11:30 and 12:00 to go and collect her children from school. Three times a week, when her eldest daughter comes home from school and can look after the shop, Claire goes to buy stock at the main market of Lomé.
A group leader
With the association SWAA Togo, Claire participates in sessions to raise awareness about family planning and sharing experience. Through this association Claire found out about Assilassimé and Entrepreneurs du Monde. With other members of SWAA Togo, Claire set up a group of micro-entrepreneurs called Mawufenusè (the power of God), because “without the power of God, the group can’t go forward”. Thanks to two loans of 40,000 CFA francs (€60) and 60,000 CFA francs (€90), Claire has increased and diversified her stock of vegetables and canned foods, and is able to attract more customers. Her net weekly income is now 5,500 CFA francs (€8.50).
The benefits of saving and training
The training sessions dispensed by Assilassimé taught Claire about the importance of making regular savings, and, since attending, Claire has managed to save 13,000 CFA francs (€20). She also saves with a community group in her neighbourhood and pays a portion of her children’s schooling. Claire is proud of her children’s achievements at school and would like them to continue studying, in a private school if possible.