Zohir lives in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. He is married and has four girls and two boys, between 15 and 26 years of age. Zohir trained and worked as a baker all his life, and in 2007, he decided to set up is own shop, a traditional bread called non which is flat and round. He took a first loan equivalent to USD 2,000 to buy flour and other raw materials. He built a bread oven in a rented space and started baking and selling his bread. In 2008, he took another credit of USD 4,000, after having repaid his first one with interests, again to buy more flour. He built a second bread oven and hired two bakers. He now oversees the selling in the street with his wife. Three of his daughters also work for the family business. Thanks to his high productivity, he sells to other bread vendors in the neighboring areas.
The micro-loans have helped him increase his income considerably, most of which he reinvests in the business and saves. He says owning his business has given him a new found sense of security and pride knowing he can better provide for his wife, children and future grandchildren.