Project information

Urban Microfinance in Gujarat

To help an initial 225 urban slum dwellers in Ahmedabad, Gujarat have acess to finance to start productive enterprises to both bolster their own socio-economic status as well as send remittance home to support their wider families living in outside villages.

January 2012 - January 2015

Charity information: Shivia

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  • Need


    Ahmedabad is the largest city in Gujarat, with a population of over 5.4 million. In January 2001 the city suffered an earthquake killing thousands and destroying buildings and livelihoods across the city and its suburbs. The city was rebuilt, and seen as a new economic hub, attracting a large migrant workforce seeking employment and opportunity. As a result, large scale slums with little or no planning were formed, putting pressure on the local economy. We are addressing these slum dwellers.


    We are helping these slum dwellers, who have no rights in Gujarat when they arrive, get access to finance and training to engage in enterprises which will give them an income to address the plethora of problems they face in the slums as well as to send remittance home to their families who maintain a subsistence life style in rural India. Shivia provides, through its local partner SAATH, ongoing training and loans to facilitate this.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To raise the socio-economic status of slum dwellers in Gujarat.


    » Provide ongoing group training (basic literacy, financial literacy, business ideas) through Joint Liability Groups. Each JLG consists of 4-6 members.
    » Provide loans - approximately £120 each - to be paid back over a one year period to enable clients to engage in enterprises such as tailoring.
    » To encourage saving before making loans so that clients learn how to financially plan and meet needs of the household during tough times eg. monsoon.
    » Help clients repay their loans in a disciplined manner so they can be renewed and their businesss scaled up and add further to household income.

    What success will look like

    Success will be when clients are engaged in enterprises that postively add to their household income and enable them to pay for clean water, nutritional meals and educate children.

  • Impact


    Changes to both slum conditions through increased household income as well as conditions back home for dwellers' wider families. We will demonstrate success through our standard Social Impact Assessments which allow us to monitor and evaluate each client and any socio-economic improvements on an annual basis.


    The greatest risk is that slum dwellers may return home at any time meaning they cannot repay the loan. Through good relations with clients and knowing their exact situations, we should be able to predict and prevent this from happening. A further risk is that price of raw materials in India has increased hugely over the past year meaning clients may fall into arrears or seek larger loans. We have to therefore raise more funds or be more selective in who we lend to.


    We report to donors on a quarterly basis through written reports and photos. We also hold calls and welcome any donor to visit the work at any time. We try to report to donors to their liking although a standardised system would suit us better.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £10,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £9,000 Loans Provide loans to approx one hundred clients
      £1,000 Training and admin Interest from the loans will cover most training and admin
  • Background


    Ahmedabad is the largest city in Gujarat, North West India, with a metropolitan population of over 5.4 million. In 2006 an official census recorded 440,000 people living in slums. The city is located on the banks of the River Sabarmati, 32 km from the state capital Gandhinagar. The project is located in two slums in the East of the City.


    With a grant of £10,000, this will be part of a wider project and will benefit approximately 100 slum dwellers in Year one, and then more when the loans are recycled to either new dwellers or existing ones. These dwellers live at or below the poverty line (USD 2 per day) and migrated to Ahmedabad in hope of employment and opportunity, especially since the city was rebulit after the earthquke in 2001. Their wider families will also benefit, since they send remittance home from any income made

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Olly Donnelly, CEO, knows SAATH the local partner well and believes they are well placed to implement the training, client selection and loan disbursements and collections. SAATH staff work in or near the slums and so they know the clients well and offer a wide range of other development opportunities for them too. Shivia provides the funding, financial and managment controls to the project. Each party brings different skill sets and expertise to the project.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Olly Donnelly

    CEO, Shivia. Olly's committment to poverty alleviation in India and desire to work in urban as well as rural areas is a key driver for the success.

    Rajendra Joshi

    Founding Trustee, SAATH. Rajendra is well known in India for social entrepreneurship and innovative solutions to poverty alleviation.

    Divyang Bhatnagar

    Project Manager, SAATH. Divyang has good experience in microfinance and is very committed to this programme. He is tireless in his efforts.

    Joe Rao

    Shivia India Consultant. Joe visits SAATH on a regular basis on behalf of Shivia to monitor that we are achieving our goals in poverty alleviation.


One life changing loan

Shivia's committment to poverty alleviation is a pefect fit with SAATH's

Rajendra Joshi, Founder of SAATH