This programme was established 2000 with an initial aim of empowering women by providing micro credit and entrepreneurial training through donor funding. Later it grew to tackle prevalent gender issues. The overall objective of the programme has since taken a different course to incorporate the two genders in becoming self-reliant. It was recently developed into the Gender and Youth Development Programme to take care of a larger scope of our societal issues.
The Promotion of Microenterprises (PROMIC) is one of the tools for strengthening the social and economic security of both men and women as a strategy towards elevating their status. Beneficiaries save and receive small loans at affordable interest rates.
PROMIC is beneficial to members who do not have collateral that they can offer as security for loans. As such a member is guaranteed shilling to a shilling by other group members. This makes it easy for members to access affordable loans for development. This method of loaning has been best preferred by members of this group. Apart from savings and credit empowerment, members also get access to training on various areas ie, handicraft skills and how to utilize them to enhance their capacities to make products like baskets, mats, ceramics, beads and jewelry which they can sell to generate income.
More than 1500 members from 0ver 30 parishes, within the Archdiocese of Nairobi have benefited from the programme. Many success stories have resulted from the programme with members running various small scale businesses which include: chicken rearing, tailoring and farming among others. which aims at empowering women through savings and credit as well as equip members with skills and knowledge on enterprise and information on other areas of sustainable development.
Virginia Wairimu is a member PROMIC, she sees the world from a different perspective that that of assisting people and mentoring them to be better persons in the community. With no young children in her house to cater for anymore, Wairumu now helps others wherever and whenever possible to meet their needs.
Wairimu joined PROMIC in 2009 where she started saving Ksh100 with the Waithaka Karoli Lwanga group. With time she had saved Ksh20,000 and was able to acquire a loan three times her saving which she used to construct two rental houses in her compound. “The income from these houses has been helpful to me particularly financing my hospital bill,” says a jovial Wairimu.
Soon after joining PROMIC, Wairimu was diagnosed with Arthritis. The hospital bill sky- rocketed within months and she needed constant funds to finance the treatment. Despite the illness, she was able to finish repaying the loan as well as continue saving. Soon after, she was able to take up a second loan of Ksh70, 000, which she used to finance the construction of two additional rentals.
It is in one of these houses that he has hosted a tenant for the past months as he is not able to raise enough money to pay the rent. Wairimu feels that helping other people in time of need is a fundamental requirement to humanity. She says that when she was sick, her house hosted many priests, small Christian community members, friends and relatives who prayed with her and also contributed towards the hospital bill.
“Since I started contributing my 10% regularly, I have seen God work His Miracles in me”, confesses Wairimu adding that acts of charity towards other people in the community ever and always come back to us in different forms. Additionally, she says that one can never lack because of helping others.