My name is Hadiza and I live in Kochifa community, Yelwa Ward, Mubi North local government area (LGA) Adamawa State.
My life made a 360 degrees turnaround when I was selected as one of the beneficiaries of the Family Health International (FHI360) and Achieving Health Nigeria Initiative (AHNi) 2019 livelihoods intervention program with funding support from United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). This exciting experience started for me when I enrolled into the vocational program of “Women and Girls Safe Space” (WGSS) managed by FHI360/AHNi. Before the vocational training, I had no means of livelihood and fully relied on my husband for support. This often resulted in tension in the home. After my enrolment into the vocational program, I was taught how to sew and with five other women who enrolled alongside myself, we were challenged to use the skills acquired to make a better life for ourselves. My excitement knew no bounds and the highpoint of our training was when we were presented with a sewing machine, which we kept using at the safe space until we perfected our skills. On graduation from the safe space, I was determined to take this experience to a new level and make a career out of it but to achieve this I knew I needed to buy my personal sewing machine. Since I could still use the sewing machine in the safe space, I started to sew and sell whatever I could create and started saving on every sewing, no matter how little the profit.
Alhamdulillah! This year by the mercies of Allah, in March 2020 I bought my personal sewing machine. And, this came at just the right time when local face masks were required for prevention against COVID-19. I produced these face masks for sale and for my family, which they use to keep safe from the virus. This is not all. I now make ₦3,000 every week through the sales of local face masks and small bags. Today, I can proudly say I support my family with the money I make, and I see so much potentials for me now and in the future. I also now have an opportunity to teach other women what I have learnt and share with them how the skills I have acquired has changed my story and empowered me. I appreciate FHI360/AHNi UNHCR project for showing me the way out of the doldrums of poverty and lack. I am still attending sessions at the WGSS because I enjoy participating in the activities and interacting with other women.
Summary of Livelihood Intervention with UNHCR Funding Implemented by FHI 360
With funding from UNHCR, FHI 360 through AHNi conducted entrepreneurship and vocational training in 2019, for Persons of Concern (PoCs) at the Mubi and Yola Women and Girls Safe Spaces, Adamawa State. The training aimed to provide skills and economic strengthening for the PoCs and their household, through business planning, monitoring of business for profitability, and knowledge on market surveys. In 2020, Zenith Bank Easy Saving Accounts was opened for the PoCs in batches to encourage them to have savings, while supporting their families and reinvesting in their businesses. This type of account does not require any form of identification, so it fits the target group.
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