Rehema Alfred is a master multitasker. She is currently in her third year of the World Encounter microloan program, and it seems like there is nothing this woman can’t do.
We met Rehema in the vast countryside of Kiomboi where she grows her vegetables. Rehema and her youngest daughter gave us a tour of the farm land, pointing out her rows of okra, spinach, onions, and cucumbers. We then walked a hundred yards down to a puddle she uses for watering the vegetables in the morning and evening each day. It is currently the end of the dry season in Tanzania, so rain is badly needed.
“Many hours of my day are spent just walking to the watering hole,” Rehema explains.
Like many women in Tanzania, fetching water consumes a majority of her time and hauling the water is extremely hard work.
“As my business grows and I get my third microloan from World Encounter, my goal is to buy a water pump,” said Rehema.
A water pump will make watering plants easier, more efficient and give Rehema the gift of time, for vegetable farming is just one of her many jobs.
“I used some of my first and second year microloans from World Encounter to purchase chickens,” said Rehema.
We left the vegetable plot and traveled with Rehema to her home. Scattered throughout her yard are chickens, rabbits, and pigeons. She has lots of little hands to help her, for she is a mother of six and is also raising another four children.
“I enjoy raising chickens. I received training about nutrition and vaccinations from World Encounter. I would like to continue to grow my chicken business and build a larger chicken coop,” said Rehema.
The chickens and other animals now live where Rehema and her family once slept. A small and cramped room with only a metal frame, plywood sheet, and animal hide for a bed. Those conditions do not exist for Rehema and her family now. After receiving the World Encounter microloans Rehema has been able to start her own businesses and prosper.
“My husband and I have just finished building a new home,” Rehema says proudly.