Stories from the field
Meet Ayi. She is a rice processor in Northern Ghana and a beneficiary of Videre’s business training program. Ayi was nominated by her pastor to take part in Videre’s business training program. There, she learned what it means to be a Christian called to the marketplace and how to operate a viable business in a way that honors God. With help from her business coach, she developed a business plan, and was equipped with the mindset of using her business as an avenue for providing for her needs and the needs of others, as well as a way to share with peers about where her hope and joy comes from. Upon graduating from Videre’s business training program, Ayi received a small business loan of $186. With her loan, Ayi was able to purchase an additional 6 bags of rice for reserve stock to help alleviate a bottleneck she faces when farmers have run out of stock during certain periods and have not yet harvested another batch.
Ayi said that she learned many valuable things about operating a her business during the training, but the most important things she took away were about saving and customer relations. “I was not saving. I thought you did not have to save until you did not have anything. I learned how to save and we learned how to relate to our customers and co-workers. I know my customers are the most important people in my business. How well I relate to them is how well my business will grow. I was selling, but did not know how to maintain my customers.” Since completing the training, her relationship with her family has improved. She used to depend on other people to provide for her family, but now the whole family does not depend on just one person. Ayi’s customer base has grown and she believes that her relationships with her customers has also benefited since attending the training. She said, “Most of my customers are not Christians. The business supports both me and my customers. Sometimes they need rice and without me they would not have it. We help each other.”
God has used Ayi’s success in business to show her family that He does provide for His people. “My family is not Christians and once I visited for a funeral and one of my cousins said to me, ‘If you don’t leave Christianity, any time you come here and need something (clothes, things for children, etc) we are not going to give you anything until you stop going to church.’ By the grace of God, I bought a very nice piece of cloth, a scarf and children’s clothing and sent it to that cousin to give to her mother (Ayi’s aunt). I also sent some clothing to that cousin, too, to give to her children. They thought being a Christian would make me very poor and that I would not even be able to clothe my children, so they were surprised to see that now I am even providing for their children and their mother’s clothing, too. Now, they shut up. They don’t know what to say. It’s been a long time since anyone has told me to stop my religion.”
92% of participants report an increase in weekly profit
94% of those who have children report that they are able to afford to send their children to school
97% of participants report that they have had more opportunities to engage in conversations with people in their community, positively impacting their relationships
72% of participants report an increase in giving
What people are saying
“I believe strongly in the work and focus of Videre. Micro Enterprise Development (MED) is a vital way to impact the world for Christ by going to where the need is, supplying a sustainable solution instead of charity, and equipping local believers to thrive.” Mike Baer, Executive Director, International Micro Enterprise Development, Inc.
“The Videre team is meeting a very real and strategic need. I absolutely love what they are doing!” Steve Richardson, President, Pioneers–USA
“I was so impressed and proud to be a part of the ministry that Videre is doing in Ghana. It’s an awesome opportunity for business people to use their skills and experience to impact people in another culture. It’s amazing how God can use anyone to do mission work.” Brian Mosley, President, RightNow Media
“I greatly benefited from participating in the training program that Videre leads their candidates through. I learned as much as the ones I was teaching! I loved teaching the biblical precepts that apply to business and helping them apply them to their “dream” business. What a beautiful thing to watch those dreams take wings!” Elaine Caudle, 2014 Volunteer Business Coach
“What I appreciate about Videre is that they are not about handouts, but are helping people learn valuable skills that will help them have a better chance at long-term financial stability. I thoroughly enjoyed sharing my business knowledge with the budding entrepreneurs in Ghana. They were a delight to work with, and Videre’s experience in that region smoothed many of the expected challenges of overseas travel and missions work.” Holly Field, 2014 Volunteer Business Coach