Finding hope through the eye of a needle

It’s February 2017 in Gitega; the second largest city in Burundi. Several large packages arrive at Tujehamwe’s Sewing Group. Those present are filled with excitement; this was what they had been waiting for. Each of these packages was a grain of hope; providing them with a sustainable future.

Most families in Burundi rely on subsistence farming. They would farm what they need and the little they had left over, they would sell to others. For those gathered around the packages, this just wasn’t possible. Some came from families which were not large enough to farm enough food, others were disabled and incapable of farming. These people had hoped for something else – for and opportunity – and luck had answered. Inside the packages were 5 Sewing Machines and materials, delivered by World Vision ADP Gitega.

The Tables were immediately set up and the sewing machines placed on top. For those at Tujehamwe asbl, they would now be able to learn a new craft which would provide them and their families with a brighter future.

All across Burundi, countless groups need similar support. If given new opportunities, the people of Burundi will jump at the chance to change their situation.

A Sustainable Answer

In the Nyanza-Lac Commune, another group has been set up, one which has already been making a difference for two years. Starting February 2015, victims of domestic violence, at-risk youth, returning-refugee widows (usually with children) and those who suffer from disabilities, were offered a chance to learn tailoring.

For many years, these people had lived in poverty. Their lives have been controlled by those around them and they had come to feel only helpless and powerless.

Sewing Lessons Begin (and help comes from unlikely sources)

Lectures and hands-on-training took place from 9am to 2pm. There were only five sewing machines to begin with. They were old, manual models, but they were enough. A Senior Pastor at the Nyanza-Lac Catholic Church offered two rooms. Each of these could hold 100 students. The limited equipment available meant that much less could attend the workshops. The members started to work together in groups, allowing more people to attend.

As the trainees started to make money from their projects, a lecture was held by a ministry legal advisor regarding their rights. Those who were enrolled in the training program, yet were not receiving a salary, were provided with welfare and benefits. This allowed them to pursue their training without financial worries constantly there. Literacy education was also provided for the children of those who were involved. The future was looking good.

We need your help

We have already helped several victims of domestic violence, at-risk youth, returning-refugee widows (usually with children) and those who suffer from disabilities. With some help from you, we can do more.

$200 buys one sewing machine and enough materials to provide training and produce products for 4 people.

We have interest from over 200 disadvantaged members of local communities. Help provide these members with the opportunities they need.

Find out more about the Tailoring Project.

Donate now

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