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Gladys Leyane was born in 1960 in Manyevheni village where she still resides. She is the mother of four children, a boy and three girls. Earlier this year her husband, the sole breadwinner for the family, was retrenched due to ill-health.

An existing Phakamani client, and Chairperson of her group, told Gladys about Phakamani and how she had been able to bring in an income for her family from her micro-business. Gladys had never run a business, but after hearing from other successful micro-entrepreneurs she decided to join the programme.

Gladys went through the standard training and took a loan of R2,000. She used the loan to purchase materials to make traditional mats and brooms. She also bought pig feed which is in high demand in her village and attracts potential customers to her micro-business. She is grateful for the continued support she receives from Phakamani staff and her fellow group members.

The business is well supported by community members in her village and other local villages. She says that she is very proud to be called a businesswoman. Gladys and her fellow group members will finish paying off their first loan in July and she plans to take a bigger loan in August to grow her business. She noted positive changes in her life since joining Phakamani Foundation and hopes that more women will take advantage of the opportunity and start a small business.

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