“My mother and grandmother couldn’t do what I can do,” said Birkinesh. “They had no plan to build for the future and to send their children to school. But my generation has better opportunities.” Birkinesh is a founding member of a local iDE-sponsored women’s economic group, a collective that meets on a monthly basis to contribute money with the goal of accumulating enough to loan to one another or invest in income-generating activities. Today she owns a thriving business selling injera bread. But five years ago, things were very different. “I knew I could change my life,” said Birkinesh. “But I could not get any capital.” After trying different avenues available to her—like taking a loan at a 100% interest rate—she was still not able to build the life she wanted. She was ready to try something new when she was introduced to iDE and the idea of a savings group. Reflecting on what led to her success, Birkinesh noted with a smile, “I had the confidence to change by working hard.”
What's next for Birkinesh
Birkinesh is self-sufficient but she plans to expand into new areas of income. She said, “There is a significant change in my life and my family. My husband is now working in the government office. I am teaching my children and I plan to continue my own education beyond the 8th grade. I have no problem with food security today.”
Birkinesh in the new
Check out this feature on Birkinesh. We're delighted to see this deserving entrepreneur spotlighted in The Ethiopia Reporter.
- Co-managing Resources
- Food & Nutrition Security