The Miango 17 women's group was composed of 20 participants. They joined the program in order to develop friendship, awareness, support network and to gain self reliance in order to improve their lives and the lives of their families.
These women live in two communities (Kitago and Jebu) of Miango district. Nineteen of them are married while one is widowed. Nine of them did not go to school at all, 6 did not complete primary school, two completed primary school, and one did not complete secondary school while one completed secondary school. Before they joined the program, so many of the women are subsistent farmers, with only few of them who do petty trading with very little capital. Some of them hawk yams from their communities to Jos town which is about a three-hour trek. Each woman lives in a family house with extended family members. They get water from the well within their dwellings, share a common toilet and bathroom where it is available. Few of them have electric lights while so many use kerosene lamps as source of lighting.
The Miango 17 women's group started poultry skill training half way through the year-long course. They are planning to start a group poultry project as soon as they complete the training. They are saving part of their sponsorship funds to enable them construct a poultry farm.
They have also learned more about business skills and marketing strategies and understood more about the importance of education in self reliance. They said, “We have gained enlightenment to improve our lives and empowered to better our standard of living." Despite the hardship and crisis in their community, these women are facing in their lives, hoping that things will get better someday. With this, they are able to make some progress.
Here are what one member of the group had to say about her experiences —
Grace Alheri Bello, 28 years old, is married. She gave birth to five children but two died, while three are alive: two boys and one girl. Grace helps her husband on the farm. She sometimes buys and sells tomatoes in the market in a small quantity. She makes very little profit and she uses it for family needs especially feeding. She felt so bad that both her profit and her husband’s farm produce cannot sustain her family. While in the program, she learned business and marketing strategies. With this new knowledge, she had improved her business. With the sponsorship funds she received so far, she was able to increase her business capital, now she is realizing more profit. Not only had she improved feeding in her family, she was able to pay her children’s school fees. She said: “I feel so good about myself."
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