During the past weekend, Director Tobias Schüßler had the chance to share our micro loan experiences with another charitable institution that has just started to use microcredit. On Bali’s neighbour Island Lombok, Gema Alam is helping people in six villages to improve their social and economic situation.
Schüßler: “After a twelve hour journey we were greeted by the nine employees and some volunteers of Gema Alam. The Organization has been active in the six villages for over 10 years and at the end of 2016 started to use micro loans. Through this they aim to end the dependency of the villagers on aggressive moneylenders. Until then, these were the only access to capital in those places. With our three years of experience we can contribute to implementing this project faster.”
After the intensive exchange of ideas in the morning, Schüßler visited one of the villages. There, Gema Alam works with a group of women who continue the tradition of handweaving and produce and sell high quality shawls and sarongs.
“This is a totally different world here,” explains Muhamad Juaini, program coordinator at Gema Alam. “It took quite a while until the husbands here allowed their wifes to create their own income or to participate in our programs. We hope that through micro loans we can empower the women to be more independent and equal.”
In the coming months we want to help Gema Alam in putting their plans into practise: offering a microlending program to the village communities