Having had a successful start to the Vocational Skills for the vulnerable project in Malawi, we are now extending it to reach another eight young people. Our project leader has interviewed each candidate and they all have their own story to tell, but you could be a part of their success story.
Fales is 23 years old and lives at Kasasire village 35 km from Ekwendeni trading centre. She lives with her single mother who is also very poor. Fales dropped school while in standard 7 because her mother was not able to help her with school materials such as notebooks, uniform and other needs. She was involved in an early marriage so that she got help from her husband but now he has divorced her.
When she heard about tailoring programme from community volunteers, she came to us at Ekwendeni Hospital to ask for help if she could be one of the students to learn how to be a tailor. She says she feels tailoring is the only training she can manage now because of her lower education. There are no tailors in her community and hopes that if she learns tailoring she would be able to start her business providing tailoring services near home.
Kinsley is 23 years old. Kingsley left school while in primary standard 8 because of poverty. His parents passed on when he was very young and he has been raised by his grandparents but unfortunately, they separated and he was forced to go and stay with the grandmother. His grandmother is very poor and their source of living is growing vegetables which due to the low quality are difficult to sell. She cannot afford the materials needed during vegetable growing.
When Kinsley was about to write Standard 8 his grandmother failed to pay examination fee and he decided to quit school because he had no one to help him. He just now stays at home although sometimes does piece work when available. Kingsley asked people around if they know where he can learn skills of tailoring which he has always longed to learn so that he do something which will help him. After chatting with him, he showed me happiness and how keen he was to learn the trade. There is no possibility that he can return to school as he is now too old.
Kumbukani Chavula, 20 years old stays at Mayele village in Chilida a 4th born of 7 children. Kumbukani left school while in primary standard 8 because of his father’s sickness he had to quit and started doing piece work to pay school fees for his brother who are secondary school level. His father passed on 2020 and unfortunately his mother is also sick and he is staying as a bread winner of the house. To earn a living Kumbukani does farming such as vegetable, maize and tomato and also burn charcoal. Kumbukani said that he is much interested in tailoring because it is going to help him to solve problems in his family and also he had seen his friends doing better because of tailoring skills. He believes that he also going to do better.
Olivia Nkhoma is 20 years old and she stays Nkhata village in Ekwendeni A. She dropped out of school when she was in standard 8 because she got pregnant. This happened to her because she wanted some support from boys because her mother is very poor and did not manage to support her. After delivery and when the baby was 8 months old, she went back to school again but she could not concentrate as she was facing a lot of problems such as scholastic materials, so she dropped again. She is now staying with her sister, Therefore, Olivia said she had always wanted to do something to earn a living and she said she is much interested in tailoring so that she can earn a living to help her child.
Sam Ndau 22 years old lives in Kachimbala village in Ekwendeni. He left school while in standard 7 due to failure of his parents to support him because they are very poor. Sam is the first born son in the family of 5 children. Sam is the breadwinner of the family because his father is sick. He is very much willing to do tailoring training so that he can have something to do to earn a living.
Caroline Tchongwe, 21 years old stays at Siuli Tembo in Luhomero. Caroline dropped out of school when she was in standard 7 due to poverty and parents’ separation which made her fail and continue with school because of lack of support. She started staying with her aunt where she was not supported hence she could not go to school. Afterward, she forced herself into marriage as an exit strategy to poverty problems but it didn’t work because when she was pregnant her husband divorced her. She started staying with her father and she gave birth to a baby girl who is now 1 and half year. She does piece work to earn a living. So she said she want to learn tailoring in order to help her daughter and her parents.
Bright Phiri age 20 years
I dropped out of school while in standard 7 in 2017 because my parents are very poor and failed to support with school materials. Ever since I dropped out of school I haven’t find something tangible and economical to do, my parents aren’t able to support the whole family of six (6) children appropriately that sometimes we go days without eating. At times we survive on local fruits like oranges. Perhaps doing tailoring I will be able to contribute to the family to give better livelihood. The money which I will be making from the tailoring business, I will be able to buy soap, cooking oil, relish and other supplies and save a little money to boost my sewing business. I want to be a recognised fashion designer in the near future.
Costace Chiwowa, 18 years old stays at Jalira Chione village in Luhomero. Costace dropped out of school when she was in form 1 due to lack school fees because her mother is very poor and failed to support her. Costace was raised by her grandmother because her mother got married to another man. Her grandmother passed on and her mother got separated with her husband and she does piece work and garden farming to earn a living. When she heard about Tailoring, she said she was very much interested because she knew that it is going to help her to earn a living and her help her mother her siblings financially.
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