Bolts of Cloth 

$42 to Restock a Microbusiness with Bolts of Cloth

Microfinance clients often use their loans to increase their inventory. By purchasing materials – like bolts of cloth – in bulk, entrepreneurs are able to save time and money, and their businesses are able to flourish. A symbolic gift of cloth can allow an entrepreneur to offer a wider range of fabric and clothing design.

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Dalila Rosa Ariza Garavito, baker and client of Accion partner Akiba Commercial Bank, Arusha, Tanzania

A designer and creator of young girl’s clothing, Dalila is a true microentreprenuer. After studying design at a vocational school, Dalila took her skills home to her family, establishing the brand Moda Feliz and running all her ideas past her two young daughters, Andrea and Laura.

Dalila’s passion for entrepreneurship and fashion design originated when she was quite young, but it was not until 2002 when she joined FMSD’s program for young entrepreneurs that she was able to take control of her future and the economic well-being of her family. In FMSD’s program she learned how to perfect her craft, establish her brand, and apply business concepts to her personal clothing line and store. The instruction she received at FMSD had a profound effect on her, and today Dalila uses many of the lessons she learned in her work and family life. “I have learned in the FMSD program that I have to involve everyone in my family. I speak up to my husband now and he has created this whole space for me to run my business. He’s realized this is something to support.”

In 2002 Dalila received her first loan, totaling 6,000,000 pesos. At first, an amount so large was daunting to Dalila, but thinking back on all she had learned in the program for entrepreneurs she knew she had the skills to manage the money, “I was scared to take it out, but I had to overcome it and take the risk. Now I have the confidence I can pay it back.”

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