For many people, the story of the woman in Proverbs 31 is just that, a story. But for Betty it is more than just a story, it defines who she is — as a wife (of a pastor), as a mother and, above all, as a business woman.
Betty lives in the Mbale District of Uganda in a village called Bumadanda. Like many of the surrounding villages, Bumadanda is not connected to the electrical grid. However, where many people would see limitations, Betty saw an opportunity. A chance not only to help her family but also her community.
Betty is a member of her Village Savings and Loans Association (VSLA), a self-help group in which members of the community bring their money and resources together to allow them to take out loans. A few years ago, it was her turn to take out some money and she received 360,000 Ugandan Shillings (about $115 USD). Wisely, Betty invested the loan in a solar panel.
This simple investment has had a great impact on her community. Betty began to charge villagers a small amount to charge their mobile phones from the electricity provided by the solar panel. As a result, people no longer have to walk 17 km to Mbale Town to charge their phones. They are now better connected to the outside world and can access helpful weather, healthcare and banking apps from their phones.