Small Business Enterprise Support

Approximately 20% of contributions that are not designated for a specific use are used to help women start small businesses.

If you would like to help provide support for business enterprises, you can do so in the following two ways:

  • Make a direct donation to the Unity Women’s Desk for Lending Circles
  • Supply funds for micro loans through Oikocredit or Kiva

Following is information on each approach.

Lending Circles

In areas not served by Kiva and Oikocredit, we will encourage women to form their own Lending Circles.  Groups of five to ten women will be encouraged to form such a group.  Each woman will contribute a small amount of financial capital in her Lending Circle.  The Unity Women’s Desk will then match their funds.  These funds can then be loaned to the women of the Lending Circle.

The women will submit their business plans to their Lending Circle; the women will vote on who will receive the first loan; when the loan is repaid, they will vote on who receives the next loan.  As the Lending Circle grows and loans are repaid, the UWD will continue to match their funds and help them to grow their businesses.

If you would like to provide support for Lending Circles, see the Making Donations page.

Following are some examples of Lending Circles we have supported:

  • Sewing school in Lake Tanganyika Province
  • Fishing business in Zambia
  • Farming business in Zambia
  • Hammermill business in Zambia
  • Transportation business in Honduras

Micro Loans

We have identified two possible organizations through which women may apply for micro loans — Oikocredit.org and Kiva.org. As we learn about other organizations, we will post them, as well.

If you are interested in learning about how micro loans work, or would like to offer financial support for micro loans, please visit these links:

We will encourage any women who apply for loans through these websites to let us know so that we may post their names here.