Maya was set up to serve economically disadvantaged women who are, or wish to be, active members of the labour force, but who cannot access financial services because they do not meet banks’ pre-conditions on collateral. Instead of requiring traditional forms of collateral, MAYA lends to groups of women, or so-called “Solidarity Groups”. Each member of the Solidary Group is responsible for the repayment of the loans of all the other group members, as well as her own. This system of “social collateral” serves to reduce MAYA’s credit risk, as well as providing a network for women to share their experiences and support one another.
MAYA’s loan conditions are as follows:
- Loans are granted to Solidarity Groups comprised of 3-5 women
- The minimum amount for a first loan is 100 Turkish Lira, the maximum is 800 Turkish Lira
- Loans have a repayment term of 6-12 months. Repayments are made weekly.
- MAYA charges a service fee to ensure the sustainability of its service.
- Obtaining a loan does not preclude the borrower from applying for further loans. Repeat loans can be 25% larger than the original loan.
MAYA borrowers go through a training on basic financial literacy and entrepreneurship before getting a loan from MAYA.