"Money empowers women and lets them contribute in decision-making."
- Essma Ben Hamida is a Tunisian born development activist, co-founder and Executive Director of Enda Inter-Arabe in Tunisia, and President of the Sanabel Microfinance network of Arab countries. Essma launched Enda in 1995 as the first microcredit institution in Tunisia. Today, with a staff of 1300 working out of 79 branches, Enda serves 270,000 micro-entrepreneurs (70% are women) with a US$150 million loan portfolio and a repayment rate above 99%. Essma was selected Social Entrepreneur of the year for the MENA region in 2010 by the prestigious Schwab Foundation.