Almost 80 percent of FINCA clients report having achieved their goals thanks to help from FINCA’s financial services. Achieving personal aspirations is one way to improve happiness, and many of the personal goals that our clients hope to achieve are the same goals that everyone has, no matter who you are or where you live. Whether it’s putting food on the table, sending your kids to school, starting a business or generally providing a better future for your children, FINCA clients—just like you—are part of our common humanity.
This year’s theme for the International Day of Happiness is “Happier Together.” It aims to focus on what we have in common rather than what makes us different. In light of current global challenges that we all face together, spreading happiness is more important than ever.
Below are three examples of FINCA and our partners spreading happiness across the globe. We are helping clients achieve the goals shared by people around the world.
Spreading Happiness through Access to Energy
In 2016, Rose Ben Aya fled with her children from war-stricken South Sudan to the Kiryandongo Refugee Settlement in Uganda. There, she heard of BrightLife—FINCA International’s social enterprise, which provides access to affordable solar lighting other life-enhancing products.
Worried that the single candle her children studied around at night was neither safe nor ideal, Rose decided to give Brightlife a try. For her, the priority was giving her children a better chance at success by helping them with their studies. Through BrightLife, she was able to finance her home solar system through a pay-as-you-go feature on her mobile phone. The money she saves from not buying candles now goes towards paying off her new equipment.
Now Rose is extremely happy. She was finally able to give her children the light they need to study and find success in the future. Read Rose’s full story here.
Improving Happiness for Himself, His Family, and His Community
Jovan Emilio Chach grew up in a very rural part of Guatemala. Since he was a boy, Jovan knew that he wanted to be a baker. As an adult, he decided to pursue this personal goal, and he learned his craft at a local bakery.
However, as time went on, Jovan knew he wanted more and decided to start his own business. He knew he would need help to purchase all the equipment for his business and decided to turn to FINCA. Just three days after contacting FINCA, Jovan received approval for his first loan. He used it to buy the equipment he needed, and he has used subsequent loans to expand his business into what it is today.
Jovan now has three shops across town and employs seven workers. He has found his own success and turned his lifelong ambition into a reality. Additionally, his business is spreading happiness throughout his community, employing others and helping them achieve success as well. Read Jovan’s full story here.
Improving Farmers’ Crops, and Their Lives
Victoria Mbewe is a single mother living in eastern Zambia. A strong woman, Victoria raises her four children while working the small farm she inherited from her mother. She used to sell groundnuts, but poor market access and low prices meant her family often went hungry, and she couldn’t afford her children’s education.
When Victoria heard she could triple her income by working with FINCA partner Good Nature Agro (GNA)—a social enterprise providing farming inputs and training to smallholder farmers—Victoria seized the opportunity. She started working with GNA and began cultivating the legume seeds they provided, which are more sustainable and bring a better market price.
Thanks to the additional income from her new GNA harvests, Victoria was able to pay for her children’s education. They also no longer have to worry about going hungry. Victoria was even able to build her family a new home with brick walls and a concrete floor—a stark contrast to her old home with dirt floors and mud walls. Her ambition and hard work have paid off, and her family’s quality of life and happiness has dramatically improved. Read Victoria’s full story here.