Aissatou Traore

About Zidisha Profiles Zidisha entrepreneurs write their own loan profiles and provide their own photos. English is not usually their first language, and many had to overcome great obstacles to obtain an education. Additionally, many do not have cameras and own only a small number of personal photos. As a result, the profiles are not always as polished as on other websites. To keep profiles genuine, Zidisha staff do not make any edits, with the exception of titles for clarity and English translations.

My Story

My name is Aissatou Traore, I am from Casamance. I am a widow with one child, who is twelve, who is in school. After the bac (college entrance exam), I received training to be an office secretary. I have a certificate in international business and marketing. Considering the economic situation in my region (the conflicts in Casamance), I work to help my family.

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About My Business

I work in the Marketing Network and I am a partener in a multinational American company in the health products industry. With at least a minor presence all over the world, we distribute natural products made by Forever Living Products to help people control their health and feel better. The company was founded in 1987 in Arizona and has a presence in 150 countries. Being a partner of this company, I solicit financing to boost my business and to help people all over the world get access to these natural products which help their health every day. Previously to start my business I received a loan of 300,000 CFA (roughly $600) which I finished paying back in 6 intervals in December of 2009.

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My Loan Proposal

More and more of the population has needs for our natural medical products, I require more capital to have more products, to increase my supply and my distribution. With the profits from my business, I would like to build a home for my family in Casamance and to pay for my son’s education in a top university of the world.

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Feedback

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Date By Feedback Rating Comment Edit
Jun 26, 2013 rebecca Neutral Seems like hard worker, but not enough information to recommend. God bless in everything you do!
Jun 03, 2013 b29765959 Neutral Not good enough = ="
Jun 03, 2013 Daniel Neutral Glad she repaid in the end, and that's commendable. But a positive rating would be unfair to those borrowers who repay on time, or if they don't, at least communicate their issues. Neutral is the right rating in this case.
Jun 03, 2013 Katpjotr Positive Not perfect, I agree with johnfay.
May 28, 2013 johnfay Neutral A very long time to payback with very little information. Mentioned would finish paying in August 2012, no word or payment until end of May 2013.
May 28, 2013 vidarlil Positive :-)


Comments

 

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Hi! My name is Miriam and I’m a Client Relationship Manager in Senegal. I was able to meet with Aissatou Traore yesterday along with a fellow intern Erin and get an update on how she and her business are doing.

Aissatou is still working with Forever Living, and we met with her at the office in Sacre Coeur 3. She is now in a managerial position so she is able to make more money from her sales. Forever Living is a health and beauty company based in Arizona that works around the world. The company has grown to over 12 million distributers in 172 countries. Aissatou is one of those distributers – she buys Forever Living products to use and sell to others. She is constantly expanding her client base and is always looking to get more people involved in the business. Just from hearing her talk, you can tell that Aissatou is very passionate about her work.

With her last loan, Aissatou was able to start construction on a house for her mother in Ziguinchor in the Casamance, the southern area of Senegal. She showed us the floor plan for the house and is so excited to have broken ground. Her mother has been sick for the past two years and has been living with Aissatou in Parcelles Assainies, but with the loan she will be able to build the house house and make sure her mother is taken care of. Aissatou expects the construction will take four months, and after that she would like to take out another loan so that she can train her two nephews to work for Forever Living as well.

Aissatou had posted a loan request in December but unfortunately it was not fully funded before the deadline passed. She hopes future lenders will look at her successes and her successful repayment rate when she posts her next loan request and will support her in her work.

Aissatou Traore   Dec 09, 2013

Hi,
For the community of zidisha,
i wait for somebody to do something because tomorro is the last day to complete this loan for mee. If you give 50, 100, 200 USD you agree to do something for the other and help me to realize my projet.
I can believe to your power of giving.
Bye aissatou traore

Aissatou Traore   Dec 04, 2013

Hi,
chers bailleurs de zidisha, il est encore tant pour vous d'augmenter le montant du financement avant la date de cloture pour aider à financer mon projet. Je travaille avec Forever living products dans les compléments alimentaires naturels pour gérer la santé, la forme et le bien etre.les populations apprécient nos produits naturels parce qu' elles arrivent à améliorer leur santé et ça leur permet de bien travailler et d'etre productif. Dans les zones rurales les gens font l'agriculture comme activité principale donc ils ont besoin de leur santé parce que c'est vital. Je demande ce pret pour augmenter mon stock et moi aussi de réussir à réaliser mon projet avec ce que je vais gagner notamment construire une maison pour ma mère.
Je compte sur vous et votre financement avant la date de cloture. Merci

Aissatou Traore   Nov 30, 2013

Hi,
Aissatou remercie toutes les personnes qui ont confiance en elle et à son projet et tous ceux qui n'hésiteront pas à aider à financer son projet. Car c'est avec vous que je vais réussir et aider le maximum de personnes à s'en sortir, à gérer leur santé avec l'utilisation des compléments alimentaires pour la forme et le bien etre, à lutter contre le paludisme et travailler pour gagner leur vie. je sais dans ce monde il y a des gens bien, prets à soutenir les bonnes causes donc c'est juste dans quelques jours pour atteindre l'objectif final du montant demandé. Prenez ce montant et donnez le c'est pour la bonne cause.Bye,

Aissatou,
I just wanted to say thank God for people like yourselves who care so much for others, it truly is a honor to help you with a small loan, I know it is not much but I do hope it is a small help to you. I will keep watching your loans and if I can help more I certainly will. God Bless you and your family, please be safe traveling those long distances...please! You truly are a blessing and inspiration, your spirit definitely shows in your photo.....beautiful smile!!!!
God Bless and take care of yourself.
Lorey Brown
Nova Scotia Canada

Aissatou Traore   Nov 30, 2013

Hi shealady,
je te remercie pour les propos bienveillants à mon endroit. Merci pour ton soutien et pour le montant que tu ma versé. Saches que ton sourire me va droit au coeur. Ensempble nous batirons un monde meilleur.

Aissatou Traore   Nov 21, 2013

hi,
dear lenders I am sorry to see that so far the amount I requested is far from being reached. And yet if you knew how much I need this funding for my business and to expand my network in the deep interior of Senegal. So I'm counting on this amount to boost my business and popularize among populations the use of natural supplements to prevent certain diseases. people here have a lot of health problems such as malaria

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Aissatou Traore   Nov 07, 2013

Dear my lenders,
Je viens auprès de vous pour solliciter à nouveau un pret pour booster mes activités. Je suis dans ce commerce de net work marketing trés passionnant pour moi. j'ai besoin de fonds pour faire les zones les plus reculées et apportées ces produits aux populations qui en ont les plus besoin. chers bailleurs j'aimerai compter sur vous merci

Aissatou Traore   Oct 11, 2013

Hi,
another world is possible to build whith the lenders of this comminuty of zidisha. to realize my promesses i think in you. i want to help evrebody but i have some some little products to travel in a long journey. i like my job timely this linkage is very important but again commitment to lend me money for my business. Don't wait, it is time to go one. bye

Aissatou Traore   Oct 03, 2013

hi,
I thank my first lender, jonhfay.
I encourage all the lenders of good will who believe in my business to support me so that I can increase my stock and advise many people to use our natural products for health and fitness. I know in a few days you will have answered my request and I will be able to support and assist people who are in need. Our only enemy is time that does not depend on us but every 24 hours that passes allows us to do a good deed. You are the right people to help each woman to grow into herself. thank you

Translated by pentatonicscale     Display posting in original language

Dear Lenders,

My name is Michael Riley, Client relations intern in Dakar, Senegal. I too recently had the opportunity to meet the wonderful entrepreneur Aissatou Traore. Welcoming me graciously into her home, we discussed our families, our interests and the nature of international business. In previous comments you have read how your loans have helped Aissatou move up the ladder with Forever Living, I was happy to hear about this success and was lucky to gain her perspective on the importance of hard work. Aissatou is well aware of the issues that plague her country, poverty, access to education, unemployment etc. However she refuses to complain, and prefers to look at things with a glass half full attitude. She discussed how Senegal, and Africa in general, represent a huge market to be tapped. She sees the potential for development in Senegal and stresses that people such as her self remain in Senegal to help improve their country. She truly believes that Senegal will prosper in the future as long as people have the ambition to continue working hard.
With Forever Living, Aissatou is allowed to act as her own boss and create her own schedule that allows her to fulfill her responsibilities as a single mother, a daughter caring for her aging mother, and as a business women. Aissatou is a thoughtful and extremely intelligent individual and she hopes that her lenders continue to stand behind her, as her humble ambition to build a home in the Casamance for her mother stays in her focus.
Until next time, Aissatou is off traveling throughout Senegal this week conducting her business, finding partners and buyers for Forever Living products.

Aissatou Traore   Oct 08, 2010

dear donors,
to every one of you I send you my sincere thanks for the trust you have given me for my finances. I will use as I should to work and help others too. The wait has been long as I'm in business where perseverence is the master. I never become discouraged. My business is to help everybody anywhere in my country. i wish you the best.

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Aissatou Traore   Aug 26, 2012

dear my lenders,
i am aissatou Traore from sénégal in ouest africa, now today i travel in mbour in 80 km to Dakar to meet some people who buy my products. It's more interessing for me because some one like to do the same thing whith my business she cane be my partner and she represent my company partner in this locality .In few days i can finish my paid for my lenders. I work very hard to realize my dream TO BUILD A HOUSE IN ZIGUINCHOR FOR MY MOTHER IN 2013, January to May.if you can supor me again for a new lend. Thank for all

admin   Aug 14, 2012

Dear Lenders,

My name is Marc Figueras, I’m Client Relationship Mananger here in Senegal. I had the pleasure of meeting Aïssatou last Friday. Aïssatou lives in a small apartment in Parcelles Assainies, with her 15 year old son Julien, her little sister Agnès, and her elderly mother, who is often sick.

MANAGER AT FOREVER LIVING

Aïssatou is very passionate about her work. She works for an American multinational called Forever Living which specializes in the distribution of a range of healthy natural products, from cosmetics to nutritional supplements. Her job is to find new distributors (Forever Living partners) all around the country, and manage existing ones. She earns a commission on the revenues of each partner, and constantly travels to meet them. The challenge is to find entrepreneurial people, as most people prefer stable job with a salary. Aïssatou is dynamic, meticulous and organized (“c’est un travail de fourmi”). She enjoys working with distributors, because the products bring health to their communities as well as some profits for the partner.
To someone with such an entrepreneurial spirit, microfinance is an essential tool for success. She encourages each distributor to use Zidisha.

IMPACT OF THE LOAN

To Aïssatou, the value of her loan was that it really boosted her motivation to work. As you know, a few months ago, much of the inventory in which she’d invested her loan got stolen. But she did not give up, because she felt an obligation to succeed. Instead she worked twice as hard to find more partners. She is thankful to Zidisha for pushing her to work harder, and Forever Living rewarded her hard work with a promotion to the position of manager.

Her economic situation now enables her to save some money for the future. She wants to build a house in Ziguinchor for her mother. She hopes to save enough money to send her son Julien -whose father passed away when he was only 18 months old- to university in Canada.

Dear Lenders,

My name is Sam Gant and I'm one of the Client Relationship Managers here in Senegal. On Thursday June 7th I had the opportunity to meet with Aissatou in her home in Parcelles, where she showed me both the aloe vera plans that she grows in her courtyard and the astounding variety of aloe vera refined products she sells--through her company she has access to more than 300 products. Mme Traore believes strongly in the value of natural supplements as preventative management, and explained how a variety of dietary supplements and ointments could serve to keep her clients healthy. Aissatou is a model vendor for FOREVER products-- she has used aloe products to help her mother through a bout of illness, and with her profits from sales she recently moved to a larger apartment.

She is a very capable and canny businesswoman who is willing to put in long hours of travel to succeed in the entrepreneurial field. She recently made a14 hour long day trip 50 kilometers outside of Dakar to spread her products, and keeps meticulous notes of all of her clients to keep them stocked with their chosen supplements.

Mme Traore is very grateful to her lenders for supporting her, and works hard to overcome any setbacks she encounters.

Aissatou Traore   Jun 07, 2012

My dear lenders,
It is with great pleasure that I share with you my experience concerning my business with the FOREVER network marketing.
These days I have been going over the rural zones to advise people with the use of nutritional supplements that will help improve people’s nutrition. The most used and known are Aloe Vera pulp, garlic, thyme, omega 3 and 9, vitamin C, dental gel for blood circulation. They help fight against malaria, cardiovascular diseases, etc…
I was recently promoted manager in the FOREVER Company; I help my network to recruit other managers like me. I encourage them to sell and make good sales. I had Zidisha interns visit me, I was happy to talk about my business. I found them very nice and open minded.
I would like to thank all of my lenders. See you at the summit!
Aissatou Traore

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Aissatou Traore   May 16, 2012

dear my lenders,
I was happy to send this shor message for you. My life is not very easier but today i want to say " thank you very much to GOD" he bless me for many difficulties. I fall down but i can rise, god help me and zidisha whith his lenders can be comprehensible to give me a deadline for my repaymen. Today i am graddily Manager in my business and i hope to pay my loan in a shor time. THANK FOR EVRYBODY at next time bye

Aissatou with her son after being awarded manager! Congratulations Aissatou!

Dear all,

I was fortunate to have the occasion to meet with Madame Traore at the Senegal headquarters of Forever Living, a direct selling company that produces aloe vera and other natural health products. Forever Living is based in Arizona, but markets its products through a worldwide network of tens of thousands of independent distributors, including Mme Traore.

Mme Traore is the sole breadwinner for her elderly mother and fourteen-year-old son, who she hopes will have the chance to go to university in Europe or the US someday. She has a genius for marketing, and our conversation soon turned to the benefits of her products. She gave a riveting presentation, skillfully weaving international statistics, personal experience and client success stories into a mesmerizing narrative that left me thoroughly convinced that aloe vera toothpaste is, after all, a must-have staple of good oral health.

Mme Traore used her Zidisha loan of $780 to purchase a large inventory of Forever Living products, which ought to have boosted her earnings substantially. Unfortunately, most of the inventory was lost to a thief who broke into her home and stole her stock before she had the chance to sell it. Completely out of money to buy new stock but undeterred, Mme Traore contacted her best clients one by one and offered a deal: she would give them a special discount if they would agree to pay in advance for the products, rather than upon delivery. She used the advances to restart selling, at a profit margin that was razor thin due to the discounts. She makes up for the narrow profits with volume: her notebook contains the names of several hundred clients, many of whom are located in rural villages a day's journey from Dakar city. On the days she "goes into the bush" to deliver her products to the villages, Mme Traore wakes up at four in the morning to prepare the day's meals for her fourteen-year-old son, and returns home as late as one o'clock the following night. This strategy has enabled Mme Traore to slowly reconstitute her working capital, while also making regular repayment installments on her Zidisha loan, which is now 78% repaid.

She seemed completely undeterred by all of these obstacles. By way of explanation, Mme Traore cited the example of Bill Gates: he started on a small scale as well, and she is simply doing the same. She is a voracious reader. On the day we met, she was reading a French translation of "The Leader in You" by Dale Carnegie. Mme Traore said she was inspired by Mr Carnegie's idea that there is a "mine of gold" inside each one of us, and that the best way to fully realize our potential is to develop our own business. She values her freedom, and says that nothing can stop her from reaching her ambitions.

Best,

Julia Kurnia
Director, Zidisha Inc.

Hi lenders,
I had the pleasure of meeting with Madame Assiatou Traore the other week. Assiatou is still active in her cosmetic selling business. She sells “Forever” products which are distributed worldwide. Unfortunately, the elections are hindering her success since she is unable to travel. Many of Assiatou’s clients are located in the Casamance region, south of Dakar in between The Gambia and Guinea Bissau. Even though, elections are slowing down her business Madame Traore hopes to start making payments again in June.

Family obligations
Madame Traore supports a small family of 4 or 5 women. Her mother has been sick and she has been using her earnings to pay for her medications.. Once her mother has recovered she will pay off what she owes.

Hi all, here is a short clip of Mrs. Traore from when I visited her in early November: http://www.overstream.net/view.php?oid=rlncrliatcu7

My name is Jenna Garchar and I am currently a Client Relationship Intern here in Dakar, Senegal. Today, two Zidisha volunteers and I met with Madame Aissatou Traore at her home. Unfamiliar with the neighborhood, Aissatou agreed to meet us at a nearby bank to take us to her house. When she met us at the bank, she greeted us with a huge smile and was incredibly friendly, warm and welcoming. When we entered her home, I automatically noticed her supply of Forever Living Products which were displayed in her living room.

BUSINESS
Aissatou started selling Forever Living Products in 2009 and is an enthusiastic saleswoman of the products. She sells a variety of health and cosmetic products including vitamins, soap and makeup. Currently, the most popular products among her clients are Aloe Vera products including a gel, lotion, nectar and toothpaste called “Forever Bright”. Although she experienced a robbery which stunted her business, with the loan, Aissatou has been able to create a stock of products to supply to her customers.

Her consumers are not only in Dakar but also in different regions of Senegal including Thies, St Louis and Casamance. Aissatou stressed that the majority of her clients hear about her products by word-of-mouth. Because Aissatou does not have an office, clients recommend the products to their friends who then call Aissatou for an appointment. She either meets with clients in Dakar or travels to other towns when she has many appointments lined up. Having a large variety of health and beauty supplies, most clients come to Aissatou more than once and buy products not only for themselves but also for their children and parents.
Aissatou is passionate about selling her products. She has a catalog which details their uses, so she is well-read on them and can recommend the best products for her clients. In the past, she worked in an office with long days and a small salary, and now she has more free time for herself and her family while making more money. She is fervent about being hardworking and said it is important to have this quality to make money and have success, which the loan has helped her do.

PERSONAL LIFE AND FUTURE
Aissatou profits 43% from each product sold and these earnings help in both expanding her business and in her personal life. We were able to meet Aissatou’s mother, who is currently living with her. Her mother moved in with her because she has been sick since last December. Because the loan helped Aissatou increase her earnings, she has the money to provide medicine for her mom and take her to the doctor. Her mom even uses Forever Living Products, like fish oil. One of Aissatou’s goals was to be able to build a house for her and her mother in the Casamance, but now because she is sick she would like to build a house in Dakar. They are currently paying for rent living in an apartment, but Aissatou dreams of owning her own place. Her son, who is currently 14, plans on taking the BAC, so Aissatou is already saving money for him. She hopes he can one day study in France, the USA or Canada. Aissatou said “If you do a lot, you will achieve a lot, but if you don’t do anything, you can’t do anything”—so it’s important to work hard. She is positive about her business and the opportunities it will create for her.

The Muslim holiday Tabaski is this coming Monday so the majority of Senegalese are preparing for the holiday. Aissatou said people will be eating a lot of sheep and oily rice so they will need more vitamins! After Tabaski, she will spend three days in Touba working with a partner who is beginning to sell Forever Living Products. When we were leaving her home, Aissatou walked us to a taxi before leaving to meet a customer. The entire time we were together she had a huge smile on her face—it is clearly evident why she makes such a successful saleswoman.

Attached are photos of Mme Traore with her products as well as her client list (she now has 897 clients!).

Dear Lenders, Mme Aissatou Traoré was confronted with financial difficulties. Thus, she has decided to take up her reimbursements again on August 17, 2011. Thank you!

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Aissatou Traore   Jul 27, 2011

Dear Lenders, I would like to send you all my greetings and to take up again our line of conversation full of encouragements and of gratitude. After my loan, I experienced a sordid story with the robbery of everything that I had invested the loan in, this is to say that everything you had given me to work with and ameliorate my life and the life of those that count on me, in particular, my mother. I went to see the police, but to no avail, nothing, neither people nor stolen products. Absolutely nothing. Dear lenders, I have really fallen, but the most important thing is to lift myself up again because all of us fall one day in our lives. The most important [thing] is to stand up and go on I have a dream. I believe in god and he bless me. I learned the sense of recognition of Americans, because they know to how to recognize values. I told myself that I should continue my dream and reimburse the loan. I took up my work again, today I am going into the bush to give the information to everyone because, I should also help others in their health. It leaves me a little to finish my reimbursement. I want to build the house of my dreams for my mother and I am going to work until I realize this dream because there is nothing but work that counts.

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Aissatou Traore   Dec 16, 2010

Dear lenders,
I would like to thank you for your kind words about the robbery. It is very comforting for me. The police apprehended a suspect who was using one of my stolen cell phones ( 3 were stolen). The investigation is still underway to find the other suspects and to recover my products. I would like to strongly thank the police for doing its job and protecting citizens like me who work and pay taxes to the state. I would also like to apologize for my late payment this month for my second repayment. With God's help and my determination I will pay by it by Wednesday at the latest. Thank you for your understanding.
Despite the robbery, I'm still working, business has slowed but I'm still giving my best because I want to succeed and help others. For example, yesterday on the bus I bumped into an old man who was fast a sleep. We joked around a bit and then got to talking and he was complaining about fatigue and insomnia. I told him about the products I sell, gave him my business card and he gave me his number. Today, he called me and ordered products to treat fatigue and hypertension in the arteries. I am very happy for him

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Chere Aissatou Traore, Quelle malheure! J'espere que la police va vous aider a recuperer vos pertes. En tout cas, j'offre mes meilleurs voeux a vous et vos activites

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Chere Aissatou - je suis desole d'apprendre de votre cambriolage, je partage l'admiration de bodilwDK a pour votre tenacite. Mes meilleurs vouex

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Chere Aissatou Traore, Je suis tres desole a propos de vos nouvelles. J'admire beacoup comment vous avez reagi a cette situation. C'est fantastique que vous seriez capable to faire votre premier versement a l'heure. Je suis un nouveau bailleur de Zidisha et je suis tres content d'etre la pour vous supporter. Je vous souhaite mes meilleurs voeux pour votre entreprise.

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Dear Zidisha lenders,
Aissatou stopped by the office this morning with the unfortunate news that her apartment had been robbed three nights ago. She lost her phone, 90 000 cfa (180 US dollars) and about 300 000 cfa (600 US dollars) worth of Forever Living Products. Aissatou suspects a neighbor stole her products and has been soliciting police stations ever since.
Despite these hardships, Mme Traore wanted me to stress to her lenders that she still plans on making her first repayment on time. Indeed, Aissatou didn't stop by to look for pity; she wanted to double check Zidisha's bank account number.
I am absolutely amazed by Mme Traore's dedication. Here is an entrepreneur who, despite the ordeal of being robbed, made time out of her busy day to stop by to insure that she'll make her first payment on time. Moments like these make me proud to work for Zidisha and happy to know that many others are there to help dedicated entreprenuers fulfill their ambitions.
Before leaving, I asked Aissatou if she has always been so resilient and relentless. " My grandma raised me this way " she replied. " As a child in the Casamance, we had to pick rice in the fields after school. It was tough. I still remember all that weight of rice we carried on our head. But this hard upbringing and the example set by my grandmother taught me to never give up, even when it feels like the sky is falling" she explained. "The real challenge in life is getting back up. Once you decide to want to get back up, you work your way out and God takes care of the rest."

Aissatou Traore   Oct 08, 2010

Dear lenders,
I would like to sincerely thank all of you for the confidence you have placed in me and my business. I will use this loan as it should be used - to work and help others as well. The wait was long, but as I am in a business where endurance is key, I am never discouraged. "My business is to help everybody anywhere in my country. i wish you the best."

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Aissatou Traore   Oct 02, 2010

Dear lenders,
It seems that you want to discover and learn the realities of my country Senegal!!!! I would like that no more children suffer and that all the men and women live healthier. Every day I meet people one by one or in groups to learn about their problems and to provide solutions with my medications.
Did you know that without good health, there is not much we can do for ourselves or our families? So each time you lend money, tell yourself " I am supporting Aissatou so she can help someone get better". Your loans go straight to my heart and you should be proud for doing it. Together we support each other to help support our brothers.

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Aissatou Traore   Oct 01, 2010

More and more people are appreciating natural products. Those who already use them rarely hesitate to tell others about their benefits. I get many calls from Senegal's interior, like the rural towns of Linguere, Darha Djolof, Casamance, Kolda or Mbour, because people in those regions are confronted by malaria or malnutrition. The fact that people from those areas who use my products are satisfied, encourages and motivates me to meet new people and make them discover the benefits of natural products. This is why I don't hesitate to reiterate my need for financing to buy more products and deliver them to these localities. I have to sell at weekly markets and there are many across Senegal. Weekly markets are great opportunities for me to showcase my natural products and make recommendations. My time is always full and I love my work. I get tremendous satisfaction whenever a sick person thanks me for their recovery, or that someone else begins to feel better.

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semfund   Sep 08, 2010

I would like to remind our lenders of the importance of Aissatou's work. She sells products that are highly demanded but hardly available in the pharmaceutical market. It is for this reason that it is important for her to receive financing as quickly as possible so she can deliver these products to the sick, so they can recover and return to work. Her work is beneficial to the public, who needs these products, especially now with Malaria raging over Africa. The natural supplements she sells are instrumental for ones health.

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Aissatou's favorite motivational poster. It depicts a man with a briefcase confronting a broken elevator. To his right, a staircase leads up to a door titled "Tomorrow" with peace, money, health among others written on it. To reach the door, he has to cross the steps of self respect, goals, attitude, work and finally desire. Written in bold below the picture, the poster asks " Will you contemplate the steps or climb up them"?

Photos of Aissatou's badge - "I feel great, ask me about it!", her logbook of customers and her best selling Vitamin C pills.

Aissatou invited me to her home on Friday to talk about her business as a saleswoman of organic health products.

Aissatou starts her day at five in the morning. After a quick breakfast, she spends the next two hours reading books on marketing and entrepreneurship. Indeed, Mme Traore is an encyclopedia of market networking strategies and management one-liners. Motivational business posters deck her living room. Her favorite book is Being the Best You Can Be in MLM: How to Train Your Way to the Top in Multi-Level/Network Marketing-America's Fastest-Growing Industries by marketing guru John Kalench. Aissatou hopes to use this knowledge not only to improve her sales, but to one day climb the ranks of her corporate retailer Forever Living.
Aissatou usually begins meeting her clients at nine. As a saleswoman, Aissatou spends her time traveling in and out of Dakar to meet her customers at their homes or offices. When not assisting customers, Aissatou patrols the streets and public buses for new clients and potentially, partners. When she started as a saleswoman, most of her customers were friends and family. Today, they represent half.
Aissatou’s marketing approach is direct and fearless. Armed with a badge pronouncing “I feel great, ask me why!” hanging around her neck, she proudly walks up to potential clients (typically mothers and middle aged adults) to tell them about her products. With two years of increasing sales, Aissatou has mastered the art of salesmanship. “Confidence is key. I use my products, so I know they work. I have no problem or fear telling others about them. In fact, I feel like I’m doing people a service”.
If a potential client shows interest, Aissatou gives them her business card and asks for their number. Aissatou then logs that number into her client book and schedules a rendezvous the following day. At these meetings, Aissatou brings a catalog of her products and lists her clients’ demands. Her best selling products are Vitamin C pills and organic juices. She then heads to her retailer, Forever Living Products, to buy her products at a discount rate and resell them to her clients.
This process of finding clients, soliciting their orders, purchasing them at retail prices and then reselling them consumes long work hours. Aissatou’s workday ends at ten at night. Despite the long hours, Aissatou shows no sign of tire. “ I love my job. Being a saleswoman gives me the independence and flexibility to earn the money I deserve and better my family’s well being.”

Aissatou Traore   Jul 21, 2010

My name is Aissatou Traore and I sincerely thank all the lenders who believe in my business and who have provided their contributions to advance my business. I encourage everyone to do the same. Without you, I will not be able to progress economically and equally help those around me. Thank you.

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Aissatou Traore   Jul 20, 2010

hi, Iam aissatou traore and i congregulate someone who accepted to help me whith give his money to finance my business.thanks for it.

Hey, everybody. My name is Mack. I’m here in the Dakar region of Senegal as Zidisha’s Africa-based Client Relationship Manager. I have been familiar with Zidisha for some time now and wanted to see what the organization is all about from the borrower perspective.

I have been meeting with Zidisha’s clients to understand their stories and help them connect with our lenders. Also, I’ll also be adding new entrepreneurs to the site as time goes on.

As you know, Zidisha’s model works best when there’s a direct dialogue between borrower and lender – I’m here to encourage this! In the meantime, I’ll be posting stories, photos/videos about their businesses and everyday lives to help bring them a little closer to you.

If anyone wants to get a hold of me directly – questions/comments or otherwise – feel free to email me: mack@zidisha.org

It was nice to meet with Aissatou this afternoon. So far, she really fits in with the rest of the Zidisha clients I’ve met out here – she works hard and is passionate about what she does. Her clients adore her for her customer service and the lessons she often gives them on healthy living. In a very endearing way, she came across as a real social butterfly, always preaching the good word of natural solutions for beauty and medicine.

Her Business:

It was clear that she strongly believes in the products she sells. A customer can get a wide variety of things from Aissatou, but her more popular products are lotions, makeup, soaps and ointments. She doesn’t hesitate to tell you the importance of natural products and how these simple solutions are often overlooked for other types of cosmetics and medicines. The products she sells, which she buys wholesale from Forever Living Products, have gone over well in Africa. She also expects their popularity to grow in the future.

What impressed me the most, however, was her ambition to sell her products. After our meeting here at the Zidisha office, I was proud (and surprised) to see her introducing herself to everyone in the lobby, handing out her business cards and preaching the importance of natural health products. What a saleswoman!

Future Loans:

After two years of working in this industry, she continues to have a great relationship with her supplier in Arizona – Forever Living Products. With her loans she will be able to buy new products wholesale to sell to her clients here in Dakar at cheaper prices, making them accessible to more people. Aissatou strongly believes that more people should have access to these natural solutions which are often hard to find here in Senegal.

A very interesting business model -- selling US-made personal care products in Senegal. This is something that would make sense to produce in Senegal itself, though for sure would require a lot more capital than this small microloan. In any case, wish her well.

semfund   Jul 07, 2010

Hello everyone,

Aissatou works in a field that makes a real positive difference in Senegal at the moment. She distributes medical products, which are greatly valued here right now, because it is the rainy season which is a period where people are often ill with malaria and are thus very weak and at risk for anemia. The products that Aissatou plans to sell are very useful for combatting both malaria and anemia, which often strikes people who are recovering from malaria. Therefore she is doing work that is very noble and very useful to our society. This is why I recommend that lenders recognize the importance of funding her loan. The investment that it will fund is of great value.

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Repayment Schedule Changes

Aissatou Traore   Feb 16, 2012

Hi, I would like to thank the lenders of Zidisha who have kindly provided the working capital with which I am developing my business. Today I am having some difficulty in finishing my final repayment installments for reasons beyond my control. I would like to request a modification of my repayment dates.

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Aissatou Traore   Sep 28, 2011

Greetings dear lenders,

I would like to request from you an extension of my repayment schedule, due to the personal difficulties I am experiencing. I would like to complete my repayments over three months, from now until the end of the year. I thank you for your understanding, because [being responsible for repaying] this loan gives me the courage to work hard every day.

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Aissatou Traore

Dakar, Senegal

100% Repaid

About This Loan

Loan Principal Disbursed: USD 780.00
Date Disbursed: Oct 8, 2010
Repayment Period: Number of months or weeks from disbursement until loan is fully repaid 29 months
Total Interest Due to Lenders: This is the annual interest rate proposed by the borrower. Lenders may bid to finance the loan at the borrower’s proposed interest rate, or at a lower rate if they desire. If more bids are received than the amount needed to fund the loan, the borrower will accept the bids with the lowest proposed interest rates.

All interest rates displayed on the Zidisha website are expressed as flat percentages of loan principal per year the loan is held. For example, for a loan of USD 100, taken at 4% annual interest with a repayment period of six months, the total interest amount will be USD 100 * 4% * (6 months / 12 months) = $2.

The expression of interest rates as flat percentages of loan principal amounts is intended to make calculation of interest amounts more intuitive for borrowers and for lenders, and to facilitate comparison with other microfinance loans in borrowers' communities, the majority of which also use the flat rate methodology to express interest rates.
USD 65.05 (3.45%)
Borrower Transaction Fees: A transaction fee paid to Zidisha, expressed as a total amount and as a flat annualized percentage of the loan principal amount. USD 94.25 (5.00%)
Total Amount (Including Interest and Transaction Fee) to be Repaid: Interest plus transaction fees, expressed as a total amount and as a flat annualized percentage of the loan principal amount. USD 159.30 (8.45%)

Funding

Lender Name Amount (USD) Interest
jkurnia
(3,279)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
10.000.00 %
smonroe
(116)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
15.000.00 %
rebecca
(236)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
20.600.00 %
obf213
(3)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
25.000.00 %
mackmcconnell
(48)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
110.000.00 %
bodilwDK
(17)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
10.000.00 %
CWS
(1,297)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
311.240.00 %
Katpjotr
(232)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
18.138.00 %
xander
(225)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
20.009.00 %
vistisen
(5)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
25.009.00 %
xander
(225)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
5.009.00 %
jw0312
(2)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
5.009.50 %
Wiseclerk
(12)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
2.299.50 %
vidarlil
(18)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
2.509.99 %
Daniel
(501)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
50.0010.00 %
Wiseclerk
(12)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
1.4510.00 %
GalantnostS
(60)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
20.0010.00 %
b29765959
(3)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
25.0010.00 %
Anninymouse
(448)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
20.0010.00 %
alexraguet
(12)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
30.0010.00 %
johnfay
(72)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
50.0010.00 %
Per
(30)Karma is calculated on the basis of the total amount lent by the new members a member has recruited to Zidisha via email invites or gift cards, the number of comments a member has posted in the Zidisha website, and the total amount lent by a member.
3.7910.00 %

Repayment schedule


Repayments due as of Apr 23, 2014:  USD 0
Total repaid as of Apr 23, 2014:  USD 934

This loan was rescheduled on Feb 16, 2012
Date Due Amount Due Date Paid Paid Amount The Paid Amounts displayed here are the local currency amounts received, converted to US Dollars at the exchange rate that was effective at the time the loan was disbursed. The amounts credited to individual lenders are converted to US Dollars at the exchange rate that was effective at the time each repayment was received, and due to exchange rate fluctuations they may be more or less than the amounts displayed here.
Nov 08, 201083.49Nov 08, 201083.49
Dec 08, 201083.49Nov 08, 20101.47
  Feb 17, 201182.02
Jan 08, 201183.49Feb 17, 20112.95
  Apr 08, 201180.55
Feb 08, 201183.49Apr 08, 201183.49
Mar 08, 201183.49Apr 08, 201183.49
Apr 08, 201183.49Apr 08, 20117.36
  Jun 08, 201176.14
May 08, 201183.49Jun 08, 20118.83
  Jul 21, 201174.67
Jun 08, 201183.49Jul 21, 201110.30
  Aug 22, 201173.20
Jul 08, 20110.00  
Aug 08, 20110.00  
Sep 08, 20110.00  
Oct 08, 201162.99Aug 22, 201111.77
  Oct 17, 201151.22
Nov 08, 20110.82Oct 17, 20110.82
Dec 08, 20110.00  
Jan 08, 20120.00  
Feb 08, 20120.00  
Mar 08, 20120.00  
Apr 08, 20120.00  
May 08, 20120.00  
Jun 08, 201221.24May 23, 201221.24
Jul 08, 201221.24May 23, 201221.24
Aug 08, 201221.24Aug 24, 201221.24
Sep 08, 201221.24Aug 24, 201221.24
Oct 08, 201221.24Aug 24, 201221.24
Nov 08, 201221.24Aug 24, 201221.24
Dec 08, 201221.24Aug 24, 201221.24
Jan 08, 201321.24May 27, 201321.24
Feb 08, 201321.24May 27, 201321.24
Mar 08, 201310.17May 27, 201310.62
Total Amount Due933.09Total Paid Amount933.54