Joseph Yelviel is 69 years old and a single parent to his six children. Before 2012 Joseph and his family were dependent on the very meager yield from the land that he was only able to farm on during the short erratic rainy season. He had struggled to provide for the family, particularly the children's school fees.
In 2012 Joseph got the opportunity to receive a Deki loan and was able to diversify his income by farming through the dry season. This enabled him to grow crops throughout the year not just in the 'short erratic rainy season’.
He additionally received necessary agricultural training in various areas such as vegetable crop production and farm business management. It was in the 2012/2013 season that Joseph first received his loan from Deki through St Joseph’s Cooperative Union for GHS250.00 (£47).
This money allowed him to buy better quality pepper, tomato and cabbage seeds to use on the farm and he additionally bought a watering can and a knap sack sprayer for the control of pests and disease. After a lot of hard work and commitment he was able to pay back his loan and in the process increased his income significantly to help him with the upkeep of his family.
Joseph’s work was further enhanced in 2014 when he applied for a second loan. Through Deki’s person to person microfinance scheme Joseph received a loan of GHS500.00 (£94) enabling him to buy more fertilizer and seeds. With help from field staff he was able to achieve an income of GHS985.00 (£186) from around a quarter of an acre of land.
This increase in income helped him to pay his daughter’s school fees,which had been exceedingly difficult to do in the past. He was also able to reinvest part of his income back into the growth of his land, helping him to expand his business significantly. With his second loan from Deki, Joseph hopes to become self-sufficient in the very near future.