A new and vital requirement emerged from the COVID crisis. Suddenly, technology was essential to facilitate at-home learning for children.

Without laptops or iPads, a barrier appeared and households that had not previously required such a significant expense as laptops and iPads were suddenly at a disadvantage.

“Our microfinance team was able to adapt fast. From remote offices and tele-appointments, we’ve worked closely with clients to expedite applications and facilitate a quick disbursal (of funds) so this essential technology gets in the hands of the children who need it quickly,” said Phil Eastbury, BaptistCare Microfinance Manager.

Marni*, mum of three, couldn’t afford laptops for her children’s classes. “I was in dire straits. After being in lockdown for two months, I had the authorities come knocking, saying that my children were absent from school and needed to do their school work.”

“It’s a bit hard to do when you can’t afford to.”

Marni remembered the No Interest Loans Scheme (NILS) program. “When my son was born, I needed some extra support. I applied for the NILS loan then.”

“The process was fantastic. It only took a couple of days to get three laptops. Phil even worked over the weekend. It was such a blessing,” said Marni. Phil agrees fair finance options are needed more than ever as more people find themselves in financial stress. “Of course, beyond vital technology, purchasing essential household goods and services is still relevant.”

“Fridges break down, cars need registering. This is all happening while people’s employment is in jeopardy.”

HopeStreet offers no and low interest loans, providing access to fair and affordable financial support that breaks the cycle of poverty and debt. Learn more about our approach to fair finance here.

*Names have been changed. Images are for illustration purposes.