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VAMA : Bal-Mahila Vikas Samiti


Location : Madhya Pradesh

Partner Since : 12-07-2013

Founder : Indra Bhushan Verma

About VAMA

VAMA (Bal-Mahila Vikas Samiti) a leading NGO/MFI in the Chambal-Bundelkhand area for past 23 years. At present it has a linkage of 788 groups of covering more than 189 villages & 47 urban slums of Gwalior district, the BMVS started its loan disbursement operation in July 2006, has gross disbursed loans worth Rs. 18,04,97,100 to 16,908 members. BMVS is committed to provide financial literacy and credits for self-employment, livelihood and other financial and technical assistance to poor.

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Borrower Image
The floor of Heera Bai’s storeroom is covered in cardboard cartons and large, bulging plastic covers. Each of these is filled with rakhis (colourful wristbands made of thread that are part of the Raksha Bandhan tradition). Heera Bai learnt how to make them from a neighbour who helped her set up the business at home.

At the time, her husband had been unwell and could not go to work for a year. Struggling without an income in a household of seven, Heera Bai tried her hand at wage labour but found it too hard and too stressful. Money was so short that she could not even pay her husband’s medical bills and had to apply for a loan from a microfinance institution.

The rakhi business picked up within a very short while thanks to a good demand in the market. This encouraged her to apply for a Rang De loan which she used to buy more threads and embellishments to increase production. Post the loan, her earnings increased to a steady Rs.3000 per month, bringing some relief to the family.

Her husband is now back to working at his shop that deals in cardboard and has begun earning once more. When we met Heera Bai in August, she appeared to be happy with the progress of the business and told us that she was planning to take it forward so that she could double her income. The only troubling observation was that her daughters were more involved in making rakhis and barely attended school.

Outspoken and assertive, Heera Bai was clearly proud of her accomplishments and gladly answered all our questions without any hesitation. We were pleased to see how well her little enterprise was doing and hope that it continues to grow and serve as a good source of income for her.

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Evaluated By : Arvind Mamgain

Borrower Image
The city of Gwalior is famous for its handicrafts particularly its carpets. Weaving intricate geometric patterns with colourful threads is a skill developed over time. It requires attention to detail and an eye for colour coordination. When Shamim Begum first saw her sister-in-law working on a carpet, the craft struck her as being a useful way to earn a living at home and so she spent time learning the various techniques. More than ten years down the line, she is a seasoned hand at making carpets of different sizes.

“It takes more than a month to craft a kaleen (carpet), working a minimum of 5-6 hours per day but I get only Rs.4000 for the finished product.” Shamim Begum is not the only one who is left at the mercy of middlemen in Gwalior’s carpet-making industry. Other weavers we spoke to also voiced the same concerns.

Shamim explains how the system works. The middlemen provide the designs that need to be worked on but hand it over to the weaver only on payment of a security deposit. They also provide the raw materials for each job. Once the carpet is ready, it is sold in the market for more than five times what the weaver is paid.

Evaluated By : Arvind Mamgain

Partnership Summary

Total No. of Loans 5008
Total amount disbursed Rs.58,584,000
Expected repayment so far Rs.58,332,335
Amount repaid Rs.58,332,335
Amount delayed Rs.0
Amount defaulted Rs.0

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