Country: Ethiopia

Bread and the Battle For Empowerment: Murida’s Story

Murida’s husband left her to raise their four children on her own. Without a source of income, she lost her home, began living in the streets, and resorted to scavenging scraps of food from the trash to feed her family.

She felt hopeless. But then, she joined a Convoy of Hope Women’s Empowerment project in Ethiopia.

This program equips women with financial education, vocational training, cooperative saving groups, and start-up capital that is provided as a gift instead of a loan. Women engage in self-esteem-building activities and are provided with education in basic literacy and numeracy, family health and nutrition, family planning, and the prevention of communicable diseases.

Through Women’s Empowerment, every aspect of a woman’s life is addressed — from personal issues to small-business training. Convoy of Hope also provides ongoing support after a woman starts her business to ensure success.

“Every woman deserves to be empowered, to have strength and dignity, to know she is valuable,” Doree Donaldson, Vice President of Convoy:Women said. “Through this program, the lives of women and their families are being transformed and are receiving hope for a better future. I am excited to be a part of helping my sisters all over the world!” 

Murida was trained in how to cook and sell a local bread called njera. Convoy of Hope also provided her with supplies to start her own business. She worked hard, saved money, and built a house for her family. Her children are so proud of her.

“I feel like a human being now,” said Murida. “It’s like I’ve been reborn.”

Convoy of Hope is privileged to serve many single mothers like Murida. We celebrate with them as they provide a better life for their families.

Thank you for supporting Convoy of Hope as we provide hope to individuals around the world who now have a bright future ahead of them.

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Women's Empowerment

Convoy of Hope Helps Mother Throw First Birthday Party for 13-Year-Old

“It was the first time we’ve been able to celebrate a birthday,” Betelhem said proudly.

Behind her, decorations from her daughter’s 13th birthday celebration hung on the wall. To Betelhem and her family, the significance of those decorations stretch far beyond a single day; they mark an important milestone.

After joining Convoy of Hope’s Economic Empowerment program, Betelhem saw her life change dramatically. The program equipped her with financial education, vocational training, cooperative saving groups, and start-up capital.

At the start of the program, each woman engages in self-esteem building activities and is provided with education in basic literacy and numeracy, family health and nutrition, family planning, and the prevention of communicable diseases like HIV. After going through this training, women participate in income-generating activities as they launch their own small business. Convoy of Hope teams monitor their activity to provide support and ensure success.

Thanks in large part to the skills she learned through Convoy of Hope’s training, Betelhem started a laundry business in 2018. Now, she’s generating enough income to care for her six children and disabled sister, invest in her company, save, and celebrate more than ever before.

Thanks to your support, Convoy of Hope’s Economic Empowerment projects are helping mothers around the world provide for themselves and their families — affording them increased opportunities to celebrate life’s precious milestones with the dignity every person deserves.

For information about how you can be part of empowering women like Betelhem through Convoy:Women, click here.

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Women's Empowerment

Powered by Nutritious Food

Tigist lives in Ethiopia with her mother and grandmother. Tigist’s father abandoned their family and, shortly after, Tigist’s mom became sick — so sick, in fact, that she can’t get out of bed.

Tigist’s grandmother was forced to beg to get enough food for the three of them. When there wasn’t food at home, Tigist would ask a friend at school who had extra if they would share. Many times, Tigist would just drink water and spend her time at school hungry.

One day, a neighbor told Tigist’s family about a new Convoy of Hope feeding program at the school. Tigist’s teachers knew about her family’s struggles, so they accepted her into the program.

Now when there’s no food at her home, Tigist knows she will still eat a meal at school.

“We get what we need,” she says. “If we are not full enough, we ask for more, and they give it to us.”

Tigist is very eager about her studies and education. “Right now, I am a kid,” she says. “When I can stand by myself in the future, I have the responsibility to take care of them. Once I complete my education, I will get a job, and I will take care of my family.”

“If that’s the wish of God, I’ll be the one to make that difference.”

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Children's Feeding / Program Updates
In Ethiopia some of our women's businesses have grown to the size where they have their own employees! In Ethiopia some of our women's businesses have grown to the size where they have their own employees!

International Women’s Day: Empowering Women and Changing Families

Just a hand up. Sometimes that’s all a person needs to rise out of a poverty and feel like they’ve finally made it. A simple hand up can mean the difference between a success story and a life lived in despair. And that’s what we’re here to help provide: a hand up to families who need it.

Our Women’s Empowerment Initiative began five years ago, and was birthed out of a desire in our hearts to change the circumstances of women who were marginalized in society, with no hope of ever becoming more. Many we saw were homeless, with no job skills or income, and no way to provide food or shelter for their children.

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We wanted to help women like Murida, who was forced onto the streets when she could no longer afford her house when her husband left her and their four children. With no income or formal training for employment, she survived on the streets of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. She tied a long scarf to herself and around her children at night so they wouldn’t be kidnapped while they slept.

For 14 years she lived this way — but her life, and her children’s lives, have changed now.

Murida was chosen to enter our Ethiopia Micro+ program and was trained on how to make and market “njera,” a staple Ethiopian food. After her training, she was given seed capital to start her business. Today, her children are living in a home, with no threat of being kidnapped when night falls on Addis Ababa.

Because she’s able to provide for herself and she’s running a successful business, Murida couldn’t be happier. “To have someone look me in the eyes and to feel their care,” she says, “I know I am human and worth something.”

“Of an estimated 1.3 billion people living in abject poverty, 70 percent of those are women.” says Kara Edson “That’s unacceptable. We’re helping women break the cycle of poverty.”

On this International Women’s Day, we will continue to provide a hand up to women and families who need it all over the world — because we want every woman to know, like Murida, that they’re worth more than they ever thought.

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In honor of International Women’s Day we are giving away this beautiful hand made bracelet engraved with the seven countries where we are striving to change the lives of women. Comment on this blog or share our Facebook post for a chance to win!

 

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Program Updates / Women's Empowerment