As an organisation operating in 22 countries with more than five million people, Opportunity International provides invaluable access to savings, training and small business loans to people who are trying to work their way out of poverty. By using the financial services offered by Opportunity International, individuals are able to build a future for themselves and their families.
Opportunity International ultimately sets out to empower women and men to lift themselves out of poverty with the key aim of offering a hand-up and not a hand-out. Players of People's Postcode Lottery have awarded Opportunity International £375,000 to ensure that their work with those who require support the most can continue.
Lucia Enacio, from Mozambique, is 41 years old and has nine children. Three years ago Lucia's husband died and she was left to provide for her family by herself. Without the support from Opportunity International, Lucia believes she would have struggled to feed her family.
Lucia said, "My friend told me about Opportunity International, and I joined a women's group. I have only had one loan, which I used to buy bean seeds, because I wasn't able to buy them before. I also used it to pay for labour to help me weed and harvest the crop.
"I now grow soya beans, maize, beans and millet. I have done very well - I made nine bags' of maize profit and four bags' of bean profit this year! With this I have been able to pay back my loan and save money for the first time."
Through the support that Lucia received from Opportunity International, she has learnt how to set up her own business, how to manage her loan and how to increase the amount of produce in her fields.
Lucia continues, "My life is so much better now. I have been able to pay for my hospital bills, pay for my children's school fees and books, and now I am hoping to build a good house for me and my children – which we have never had before."
Clara Govier, Head of Charities at People's Postcode Lottery, said, "I am delighted that players of People's Postcode Lottery are supporting Opportunity International. The charity carries out very important work to ensure that people like Lucia have the financial help and information they need to secure a safe future."