Over the past few weeks, we've met face to face with dozens of clients in Egypt and Kenya to hear about their lives, check on their progress, and pray together. We were thrilled at their successes and inspired by what God is doing in their lives. Here are three of our favorite stories...
Fayez Hanna: Overcoming disability and finding joy
Fayez was born with cerebral palsy in El Khom el Akhdar, Egypt. Because of his physical and mental disabilities he had never been able to have a job. Idle and unhappy, he was a burden to his already struggling family. Then, TOLI helped him start a small project with a microloan. He bought an inventory of candy and sweets, and decided to try to sell them from a cart outside of churches and schools. It worked. Fayez soon was working regularly and earning steady income. The extra money helped, but his family also noticed how much happier and more stable Fayez had become. He no longer fought with family and neighbors. He had purpose and began setting goals for himself. Fayez is now completely independent, earns his own income, and contributes to the needs of his widowed mom as well. Fayez's loan is now paid off, and he continues to be one the most popular guys on the block.
Raooth Atta: Empowered to care for her family
When Raooth's husband was severely injured in an accident, he lost his ability to work and required full-time in-home care. With both of them now unemployed and housebound, their situation looked bleak. But soon Raooth found a creative solution using a TOLI microloan and a stock of fish. Because catfish are able to live for a long time in containers, she realized she can sell them right in front of her house, allowing her to continue to care for her husband as well as earn an income. She now has a bustling business offering her customers fresh catfish, which she cleans and filets as she sells them. With the income her catfish business is earning, she's now able to pay for her husband’s medical treatment and support her three young kids.
Stella Mumbua: Head of household at age 25
Stella is determined to overcome her obstacles. At just 25, she's an orphan, a single mom to 8-year-old Hanson, and the guardian to her two elementary school-aged siblings. But with grit, charisma and her energetic personality, Stella is fighting hard for her family. We visited her tidy one-room apartment, where she was thrilled to show us her new clothing inventory, recently purchased with a TOLI loan. Her clothing business clientele is growing steadily. What's more, she is a member of 3 different savings groups, and meticulously records her weekly deposits in journals she keeps at her bedside (see picture above). Step by step, Stella is finding her purpose and taking charge of her life with determination, faith, and joy.
WANT TO MEET OUR CLIENTS YOURSELF?
Travel with us! There's no better way to understand how TOLI changes lives than by joining us on a Vision Trip. Visit our TOLI communities, meet and pray with clients, and get to know our partner ministries. Several trips are already in the works for 2019. Interested? Email Abigail McConnell for details.
Other highlight from our March visits
EGYPT VISIT HIGHLIGHTS
— Our second site has surpassed 1000 loans. The village of Nazzlet Hanna has granted over 1000 microloans and is now in the process of expanding TOLI to nearby villages.
— Heliopolis Church takes a key role. A devoted group of volunteers is helping to grow TOLI to multiple sites around Cairo through their church planting efforts.
— Field staff meet and collaborate. Social workers and program directors from our Egypt sites met with TOLI leaders to share resources and training.
KENYA VISIT HIGHLIGHTS
— Small business training. More than 20 women in the village of Mai-A-Ihii completed a 4-day small business course, equipping them with tools needed to develop and grow their businesses.
— TOLI launches in Chuka. We signed a contract with KCK Ministries in Chuka, and together will serve the community by bringing enterprise and discipleship to their community through savings groups.
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PS: We need you! Here are 3 ways you can jump in:
1. PRAY. The clients above are just three examples of thousands God has touched through TOLI — and it's all because of prayer. Please pray for TOLI clients, partner ministries and leadership. And pray about how you can be a part of what God is doing through this ministry.
2. GIVE TO TOLI. We are reaching more people in more places than ever before, so we need your support. Please prayerfully consider a gift to TOLI to help us equip more people with life-changing microloans and the life-saving Gospel of Jesus Christ. GIVE NOW.
3. REQUEST A SPEAKER. Are you in the Colorado Springs area and have a small group, Bible Study, missions committee or business group that would be interested in hearing more about our ministry? We'd love to share! CONTACT US to request a speaker.