Industrious Asenaca Qalilawa joined SPBD Fiji in December 2010 and has since expanded her sources of income successfully. She used her loans to buy: (1) a sewing machine to make beautiful Fijian clothing to sell, (2) material to weave more kutas (Fijian woven mats), and (3) manure and fertilizer for her flower garden to supply potted plants to business offices.
Asenaca has the true spirit of an entrepreneur, and MicroDreams’ partner institution, SPBD Fiji, is helping to foster it. In addition to loans, savings, and insurance products, SPBD also provided Asenaca with business skills and financial education trainings. This 54-year-old grandmother now understands the benefits of saving, planning and budgeting, and how to create stable sources of income for herself and her family.
Asenaca’s increased level of confidence and success turned her into a leader and role model for other women in her community, and Asenaca has a message for them. “It is the time to use our skills for the improvement and growth of our families, our communities, and nation.” Asenaca intends to build upon her passion for creating successful businesses by helping others find their passion and success. She wants to inspire other women to utilize their time and talents to create their own sustainable, small businesses to improve their families’ standard of living. SPBD provided financing and training, and now Aseneca is a leader in transferring critical knowledge that may spread success to others.
Asenaca’s entrepreneurial drive, her business success, and her leadership skills did not go unnoticed. SPBD Fiji selected Asenaca, among thousands of other microentrepreneurs, as a 2012 finalist for the Business Woman of the Year. In October 2013, the Reserve Bank of Fiji awarded Asenaca the inaugural award for “Best Microfinance Entrepreneur” in Fiji.