About the Project
Empowering Women Entrepreneurs Worldwide is an exciting photography project that highlights the work of Lendwithcare, an initiative of leading aid and development charity CARE International UK, which empowers entrepreneurs to work their way out of poverty with dignity through the provision of micro lending and business skills training.
Lendwithcare allows people in the UK to uniquely connect with an entrepreneur in a developing country who needs a loan to support their small business. The project will create powerful photo essays featuring inspiring women entrepreneurs in five of the countries where Lendwithcare operates: Pakistan, Ecuador, Zimbabwe, The Philippines and Zambia.
FotoDocument has commissioned five talented emerging and established documentary photographers to each produce a compelling and cohesive photo essay focusing on women entrepreneurs in the commission country which clearly demonstrates the positive impact of micro lending.
Local documentary photographers have been commissioned to produce the photo essays, where possible, thereby engaging artists from developing countries, leveraging their knowledge of local customs and language and reducing the need for international air travel.
The work will be used in campaigns by the core partners and key sponsors to promote the benefits of micro finance lending schemes which help some of the world’s poorest women. It is also intended that the work will be exhibited at a central London location in 2017.
This campaign is a collaboration between FotoDocument, Lendwithcare, part of CARE International; and RubyMoon, a sustainable fashion business, which currently lends 100% of its net profits through Lendwithcare.
We are delighted to announce our five commissioned photographers for Empowering Women Entrepreneurs Worldwide:
Veejay VillaFranca – The Philippines
Shai Chishty – Pakistan
Cynthia Matonhodze – Zimbabwe
Ana Caroline de Lima – Ecuador
Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi – Zambia
The Photographers have now completed their commissions are we look forward to sharing their photo essays with you later in 2017. Here is a taster for now!
ANA CAROLINE DE LIMA
The full photos will be exhibited online when the project officially launches later in 2017.
Rationale and Project Outcomes
The photo essays will raise awareness of the real and positive long-term outcomes for women in developing countries, their families and communities, made possible through microfinance lending. The campaign will directly engage the UK public to lend to women in developing countries through Lendwithcare. The ultimate aims of the project are to raise awareness of microfinance and increase the number of loans to women entrepreneurs, whilst elevating the profiles of the partners and sponsors.
Microfinance is a sustainable solution to alleviating poverty, creating a virtuous cycle of investment and income. Women are disproportionately affected by poverty yet are key to development in poorer nations. Studies have shown women are the change agents of the family: they invest in businesses to generate income and spend a greater proportion of this income on the welfare of their families and communities – improving housing, nutrition and children’s education. Microfinance lending can be particularly effective when directed at women: empowering them to plan a stable future.
Case Study From LendWithCare
Christina Reyes – Philippines
Christina received a loan through Lendwithcare to create her own business, Project Lily. Hyacinths, also known as water
lilies, are free-floating aquatic plants common in the Philippines. They grow incredibly quickly and can be damaging to their natural habitat: preventing the regular flow of water currents and trapping waste in lakes and rivers, causing flooding and increasing the risk of spreading diseases such as dengue fever.
Christina collects the plants and weaves them into a variety of wares including flip-flops, baskets, traditional bags, lampshades and furniture. She employs 25 single mothers from her community, who mostly work from home so they can continue to look after their children.
The Lendwithcare loan enabled her to buy the equipment she needed to run the business, providing a solution to an environmental problem and creating an income for both her family and the local community.