Set Up Shop - A first in Korr village and it is making life easier

Published July 1, 2015 by

Soition Wambille outside the village shop in Korr, Marsabit CountySoition Wambille outside the village shop in Korr, Marsabit County

It might be a small roundel shop, but for the residents of Korr location in Marsabit County, this pocket size community village shop is already a mammoth success.

“We are totally thrilled and proud that we have finally opened the shop,” says Soition Wambille, Chairlady of Jitto Jille self-help group in Korr Village.

The group comprises 30 women and is a beneficiary of the USAID funded REGAL-IR Community Resilient Empowerment Fund (CREF). The fund aims to support people like Soiton in arid lands who have been forced to diversify their livelihood sources due to climatic shocks in northern Kenya. Before being awarded the funds, the group members received capacity building training to strengthen their leadership, book record keeping, savings plan and lending practices.

Following receipt of the Ksh. 300,000 from the CREF fund, it did not take long before Jitto Jille shop was established in Korr Village. Korr Village is home to 2500 households that see the village shop as essential to the provision of services that can help to sustain the community, especially women, children and the elderly.

During an interview with Mama Soiton Wambille, she informs us,

“We used to walk 14 km to buy essential food stuffs but that is no longer the case”. In addition, Soiton is delighted to inform us that in the last two months, the business has made a profit of Ksh. 32,000. The members were able to save half the amount and put the other half in a revolving fund for lending out to members. “Our members can easily access credit and loans through the groups own internal funds” she said.

Mr. Mohammed, a villager who frequents the shop told us,

“The shop acts as a binding force within the village and brings the whole community together. In addition, they have proved that they can create business opportunities and transform a sleepy village like Korr into a vibrant enterprise unit”.