UNHCR/Tom Monboe

UNHCR to Provide Loans to Internally Displaced People, Returnees and Small Businesses

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the UN Refugee Agency, reports that in cooperation with the Aga Khan Development Network for Microfinance, the organization provides loans to internally displaced people, returnees and small businesses through the Grants and Microfinance (GRAM) scheme.

UNHCR published a press release today November 23 stating that the purpose of the GRAM scheme is to help the most vulnerable people as they move towards productive economic activities.

This mentioned scheme will initially be implemented in five provinces of Balkh, Bamyan, Herat, Kabul and Nangarhar and is planned to expand to other locations as well.

The first beneficiaries of the new GRAM program, three women and two men, engaged in projects like operating a small shop or running a tailoring workshop, received their loans on November 15. Under the scheme, loans range between 25,000 Afghanis ($280) to a maximum of 300,000 Afghanis ($3,370) with repayment determined at equal monthly installments, UNHRC added.

UNHCR expects increased income from loans to help support more than 3,500 family members by 2022.

 “Through the end of 2022, the new scheme aims to provide some 34 million Afghanis (US $386,891) to 500 recipients.”, the press release reads.

“Afghans, particularly women, are striving to support their households with very marketable skills and abilities,” stated UNHCR Representative Leonard Zulu. “This initiative will help individuals get a firm foothold on the business ladder and establish themselves while delivering more economic vitality to their communities.”, Leonard Zulu further added.