On her second day visiting female entrepreneurs in Bosnia-Herzegovina, BBC3's Stacey Dooley travels to Srebrenica to see how microloans provided through lendwithcare.org are changing lives.
|BBC3's Stacey Dooley with Sefika and her son, Adnam© CARE/Jon Spaull|
Second day here in Bosnia. Today I spent time in and around Srebenica. Srebenica is significant in Bosnia - this is where the genocide took place in 1995. At the Srebenica memorial, we heard first hand about the thousands of men and boys who lost their lives, from someone who managed to survive. Seventeen years on, the war has finished, but the problems created by the war are still visible. Lives were destroyed then and people are still trying to rebuild them now.
Just outside Srebenica we met Sefika, who's 21 and married with a 20 month-old son, Adnam. It was a real pleasure spending time with Sefika. She was able to explain very clearly the benefits of being involved with Lendwithcare. She told me if it wasn't for the opportunity of a loan, she doesn't think her husband's wage would be sufficient in supporting the whole family.
Sefika used her loan to buy a cow. Initially the cow was used to feed her baby and now the plan is to sell the calf, which will enable her to continue supporting her family, including her young son Adnam.
Sefika lost her father during the war and her brother soon after. She tells me her, and all of her girl friends who are of a similar age - early 20s - have no real hope of becoming employed any time soon, which unfortunately I'm learning is a massive problem here - youth unemployment. Despite being up against it, Sefika was so welcoming and incredibly positive about the future. Sefika wanted to thank lenders in the UK. She said she was very grateful for the loan and had invested it wisely.
To read more about women like Sefika, who are using microloans to rebuild or improve their lives, please visit the lendwithcare.org webiste: www.lendwithcare.org