meet SOME of the talented women
is 24 years old and is the guardian and sole supporter of her 3 younger siblings. Her father was shot and killed by robbers entering their home and her mother is in a mental ward. Ama is a teachers’ assistant and uses her microcredit loan to buy large sacks of rice in the capital, Accra.
She sells rice at a profit in the village and much of the money goes to help her sister get a nursing degree. Ama also pays school fees and expenses for her other siblings and sends cash for her mother’s care. She is very good at English, and earns extra money by tutoring after school.
is 45 years old and sells creme, which she now can buy in large vats at the central market. She adds perfumes to the crème and sells it in small jars. She goes from town to town balancing her wares on her head as she rings a bell to let her customers know she has arrived. When her children were babies, she took them with her. The shop was on her head and the nursery was on her back.
Paulina Akua’s husband is a fisherman but he catches less each year because of overfishing in the nearby lakes and streams.
is 30 years old. She married a musician at 16 and they have 4 children who all attend school. Her husband now drives a truck and she sells used clothes, which she buys in the neighboring country of Togo. Her loan is used to buy larger bales of clothes so she does not have to travel so often and leave her children in the care of others. If she is lucky and can avoid having to bribe customs officials on both sides of the border, she can make a good profit.
Her husband’s daughter from his first marriage died last year in a traffic accident and they are still paying off loans from friends and family for the funeral.
is 18 years old and dreams of becoming a journalist. However, she has a long way to go because classes are very expensive and she will also have to pay for her internships. Rita finished high school last year and with her microcredit loan has opened a business, where she sells food. Her “shop” is a table set up by a busy road. A typical work day for Rita is 12 hours. Her father is dead and her mother sells cassava at a local food market.