Suma is 28 years old. She lives with her fifty-five-year-old husband and their son. When they first moved to a new region in Nepal, they were empty handed. Starting a new life was very hard and they were only able to eat 1 meal a day. Suma took a tailoring course for a year and after 2 years, managed to open a small tailoring shop.
She heard about the My Business My Freedom Program from a woman near her who had taken a microloan under the program about one and a half years ago. She asked the group leader to include her in their group and after training in small business management and budgeting, received her first loan. The added capital enabled her to increase the stock in her shop, consequently helping her sales increase. She has since paid back her first microloan and has taken a second. With her latest capital funding, she purchased a quality sewing machine and more stock for her shop. She earns 800 rupees [US$7] from the tailoring and 500 rupees [US$4] from a clothes store daily. This has helped to improve her household. As such, she plans to continue and hopefully expand her shop in the future.
Suma hopes to maintain the trust that her group has in her by repaying her microloan on time. As a young woman she is happy to have the resources and capacity to be independent and is grateful to the My Business My Freedom Program for empowering her.
Dil lives with her daughter in a rural area 25 kilometers away from the city. They live in two rented rooms with a roof made up of zinc sheets. She works as a farm laborer to provide for her and her daughter.
Many Filipino families continue to suffer from the harsh consequences of prolonged lockdown in the country. Sadly, many of these parents are pushed to their limits and resort to exploitation (of their own children) as a means to earn a living.
Womokyid, 29, lives in the province with her family and aging parents. When she was younger, her father had an accident at work leaving him unable to work. Because of this, Womokyid had to stop school so she can help her mother take care of her father and earn income for their family. Now that she has a family of her own, her desire is to start a small restaurant of her own so can take care of her family while also earning a stable income.
Fujie, 44, is a single mother. She raised her son alone after her husband has left home many years ago. Her biggest regret was not being able to send her son to school to complete his studies. She hopes to be of help in any way she can.
Quijangtso first applied in the Husky Energy Tailoring Skills Program for Women in 2019 with the recommendation of the project coordinator and teachers. Faced with a lot of challenges, Quijangtso did not back down and continued to persevere.