Falak Naz, a 40-year-old resident of Sultan Chang village in Tando Adam, Sindh was born in a very poor family. She had an accident at an early age and lost one of her hands. Due to her disability, she was married off to a widower with 4 children and now had extra responsibility of caring for them. Her husband was the sole breadwinner of this family of 6 and his income was insufficient. Falak’s family was living in extreme poverty with terrible living condition so much so her ceiling used to leak during rainy days.
Amidst all this turmoil, Falak wanted to help her husband in increasing her family income and get out of the vicious cycle of poverty. Falak saw people, in her vicinity, borrow loans from SAFCO to set up their businesses and increase respective incomes. So, she mobilized her neighbors and approached SAFCO for a loan. In August 2011, she got her first loan of PKR 22,000, which she used to purchase a calf – later sold with a good profit margin. In December 2015, she took another loan PKR 25,000 from SAFCO and opened a grocery store. The profits of this shop covered the expenses of the family and her loan installments as well. Falak also helped her stepson purchase a rickshaw through a microcredit loan from SAFCO, to increase her household income streams.
During this time, Falak faced another challenge in her life when her husband suffered a heart attack and fell critically ill. He was unable to work and the money she saved was spent for his treatment. Due to her husband’s illness, she had to sell her son’s rickshaw and faced enormous financial difficulties. Constant withdrawals from the store reduced business income considerably.
Considering her good credit history, SAFCO kept on lending microcredit loans to Falak (upon her request) year-after-year, so that she could revive her business and help her stepchildren to increase household income. Her last loan amounted to PKR 70,000 which she used to grow her business and again purchase a rickshaw for her son. Falak has been a true depiction of strong Pakistani women who, despite setbacks and limitations, remains resilient in the face of challenges and has helped transform lives of her family. SAFCO Support Organization – a partner of PMIC – also needs to be appreciated for consistent support they provided to Falak and many other poor clients in Sindh. PMIC and its partners are committed to eradicate poverty through microfinance and microfinance plus interventions.