Brian Lupiya lives in the capital of Zambia. He has always sold onions at the local market in Lusaka to earn a living. But when the first cases of coronavirus appeared in Zambia and strict measures were put in place, Brian lost his job overnight. We helped the young Zambian to rebuild his small business.
Small-scale traders have been hit hardest by the restrictions
In Zambia, as around the world, the coronavirus pandemic is testing the resilience of the local economy, which was already facing a number of challenges before the outbreak. In particular, it was plagued by high levels of poverty. The pandemic has exacerbated the fragile situation and increased the vulnerability of Zambians to economic shocks.
The restrictions that the government was forced to impose in the first few months restricted public gatherings and movement, depriving Zambian market traders of customers. Vendors suddenly had no one to sell their goods to and were saddened by the sight of perishable fruit and vegetables.
As the measures began to ease, people slowly returned to the markets. But in the meantime, the sellers lost their goods and their livelihood. Suddenly, Brian Lupiya did not have enough funds to buy the required quantity of onions again to rebuild his market stall.
We supported Brian with a financial contribution that enabled him to re-order as many onions as he needed. Today, thanks to our support, he is ordering even more bags of onions than before. Before the support, Brian Lupiya could only order 10-15 12Kg bags of onions, but now he is able to order up to 60 12kg bags of onions. He is thus able to earn more money and provide an important and stable income for his family.
We are helping small Zambian traders through a project titled Multi-sectoral Interventions to Prevent the Spread and Mitigate the Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic in Western Province and Lusaka.