Women economic empowerment.
Byline: Bilal Ahmed
Mrs Bashul lives in the quiet little village of Pir Jo Goth, District Larkana, Sindh. Like millions of other women in rural Sindh, she suffered from financial problems all her life. Poverty held her captive, and she was unable to get her children educated and other necessities of life despite her desire to give them the best. Her husband suffered from a disability that incapacitated him from using his right leg and making it impossible for him to carry weight or work for an extended period. Qurban was a farmer and used to work in the fields of a landlord, earning merely a meagre amount to put three meals on the table, let alone save or entertain the demands of his children.
One day, Bashul received a loan of Rs. 15,000 from her Community Organisation (CO) and was able to help her husband in setting up a small shop on the main road of their village. By doing so, the family acquired a steady income stream through which they were able to send two of their sons to school, have food on the table and save a certain amount every month. In addition to this loan, Bashul was also able to get Rs. 14,000 as an additional Community Investment Fund (CIF) grant through which she was able to add money from her other savings and bought a calf. The loans, although seemingly small, have changed the life of this family for the better.
Now Bashul is more confident and has plans for her family's future that include some social and economic security. But the question is from where they got the loan. It is not a bank, it is a programme called Sindh Union Council and Community Economic Strengthening Support (SUCCESS) Programme (2015-2021). This is very noble which must be appreciated and continued.