Over 5000 residents in Mwingi Central constituency have used Uwezo funds to set up micro businesses and improved their livelihoods.
The beneficiaries who obtain the Uwezo loans through their respective groups, were able to set up small businesses while others used the funds to expand their business.
“Through the Uwezo loans, catering business has progressively risen especially at local trading centre, while others in a group or as individuals used the funds in buying tents and chairs for hire during public fora, whereas others buy pumps for car wash business among other many businesses,” said the officer in charge of the Uwezo Funds in the area. Mboya Kyoyo.
Mboya, while speaking to KNA in his office at Mwingi town on Friday, further disclosed that at least over 252 groups have accessed the Uwezo loans in the last two years, with the beneficiaries being youth, women and people with disabilities.
The Uwezo fund area boss called on those who are in need of the funds to apply for the soft loans to help them set up micro businesses and create self-employment.
“Being an interest free loan, it has attracted more residents especially those undertaking business as they use it to
boost their business,” he said but regretted that youths unlike women are few who are apply for the loans.
He noted that his office has been undertaking sensitisation programmes across the constituency aimed at informing and educating locals on the Uwezo funds.
Uwezo fund is a government interest free revolving fund for women, youth and persons with disability that aims to boost financial status of the citizen through promoting business activities.
“The beneficiaries are required to be organised in groups of at least 15 members and the group registered with the social services department. The youth group members should be aged between 18 -35 years” said Mboya.
The groups are required to present a proposal on an income generating activity or an income generating project being undertaken by the group, to help the Uwezo funds office determine amount of money needed for the project.
Once they obtain the Uwezo loan the group is given a grace period of 6 months. Sh.50, 000 is the least amount that is given to each group while the maximum is 100,000 to be paid for at most 2 years though the group has the option to reduce the time period to less than 2 years. After the first loan repayment, the group can be given double amount during the next round of borrowing.
By Magero Joshua/Denson Mututo