We’ve heard from our SKIMFI beneficiaries that being treated like finance customers is exactly what they want. There’s a term we like - “a hand up, not a hand-out.” By making our program akin to a banking transaction, we’re like a bank for people on the less advantaged side of the socio-economy. And just like any of us walking into a bank for a loan, our microfinance beneficiaries come to us with references and a business plan.
At the end of the day, the purpose of SKI Charities is to bring people closer to independence and respect for themselves and what they do. Treating our beneficiaries as banking customers who have a responsibility to pay back their microloans means they are treated like everybody else in the financial system. So we think it’s worked out great, especially with people achieving that self-affirming respect. It’s key to everything we do.