Hardworking Father of Nine Sets Up Third Business
Bellings Zgaka is a young father from Usisya, Malawi. In the past three years, Bellings has taken two different Deki loans to help work himself and his family out of poverty by expanding his business. His success story, and the dedication behind it, is an inspiration to any aspiring entrepreneur.
In 2011, Bellings had just a small shop to support his family. With six children, as well as three orphans and his elderly grandmother to look after, he struggled daily to make ends meet and couldn’t afford to send his children to school. He requested a loan of £200 from Deki in order to bulk buy stock for his shop to sell on at a profit.
Profits help set up a second business
The increase in stock and variety in Bellings’ shop immediately led to an increase in business, and with it, profit. For the first time, he didn’t have to worry about finding enough money to feed his children for the week. But Bellings recognised that if he wasn’t careful, this profit could quickly be consumed by his large family, and he was keen to ensure that the increased income was something that could be sustained in the future. With this goal in mind, Bellings decided to reinvest some of his profits into opening a new barber shop.
Now with two successful businesses running, Bellings applied for his second Deki loan and used the money to buy a sewing machine to start offering tailoring services. And throughout all of this, he was still investing in additional stock for his original shop.
Businesses provide employment in the local community
When we visited Bellings in July 2014, he had successfully repaid both of his loans and all three of his businesses were thriving. In fact they were doing so well that he had employed two people to help keep up with the demand from his customers, providing employment in the local community.
The changes to Bellings’ life and the lives of his family members have been profound. His family now has enough food to eat and he is able to pay the school fees for all his children. He is also particularly proud of the fact that he has also been able to pay the secondary school fees for his little brother and provide some pocket money for his cousin.
Bellings’ entrepreneurial spirit and hard work have led to a dramatic improvement in the living standards of his family. But he’s not stopping here; he continues to work hard and has aspirations of opening his own restaurant in the near future. He is full of ideas for other entrepreneurs in his community but his advice to others is simple: “Be trustworthy and be hardworking”.
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