The Rotary Club of Tiruchirapalli organised a meeting here on Tuesday with rural women who benefited from the micro credit project launched by the club in 2007 with the support of Rotary Clubs of Seattle and Bellevue, USA and RI Dist 5030, USA and Rotary Foundation.

The Club, through the Matching Grant Micro Credit Project, distributed Rs. 21.38 lakh as credit to 311 rural women beneficiaries in 2007. The 100 per repayment rate enabled the club to use the revolving fund to assist 1,277 women beneficiaries to the tune of Rs. 73.85 lakh today.

At the meeting, the women beneficiaries thanked the Rotary members for their financial support in starting micro level business ventures which helped in improving their economic condition. The beneficiaries spoke in voice to expand their business venture and diversify the trade they were engaged in.

The club’s past president and Project Contact R. Panchanadhan appreciated the beneficiaries for prompt repayment of loans which enabled the club to provide assistance to more number of beneficiaries through the revolving fund.

While highlighting the initiatives taken by the club in getting a matching grant from the Rotary Foundation, he thanked the individual efforts of Ms. Nancy Pasternak of the Rotary Club of Bellevue in getting her club and the Rotary Club of Seattle in joining hands with the Rotary Club of Tiruchi in this endeavour.

He said the club was ready to provide free training to the beneficiaries in their chosen fields to diversify their business through the existing ROTECH Institute.

In her address Ms. Nancy Pasternak exhorted the beneficiaries to turn community leaders in their own right and become the real harbinger of happiness. Since the objective of the project was women empowerment, she assured to seek more contributions from Rotarians in the USA to continue the project.

John Peter, Chief Executive Officer, Anisha Microfin Assn, Tiruchi, the nodal agency for selecting the beneficiaries, spoke about the economic improvement of the families that had benefited from the project.

The club’s Past District Governor, M. Elangovan reiterated the Rotary’s resolve to continue the project. Earlier Ms. Nancy and Mr. Elangovan and others interacted with the beneficiaries who had exhibited their products.