Help 100 disadvantaged rural women grow mushrooms

by Tekeshe Foundation
Women Ecstatic To Receive Sewing Material
Women Ecstatic To Receive Sewing Material

We would like to express our heartfelt gratitude to you for your continued support of this project. Together we are transforming the lives of disadvantaged rural women. We coudnt have done it without your help!

Women are the lynchpins of their communities and yet the vast majority of rural women are disadvantaged educationally and economically. One of the biggest challenges they are faced with is lack of income. Women who are heads of households struggle to feed their children. They rely solely on subsistence farming as their source of income. The women in these rural areas are very hard working - they spend most of their days in the hot sun tending their crops. Yet even after working so hard they end up with no crops because this area experiences recurrent droughts. With no crops and no other source of income these households end up drifting into poverty.

This project focuses on improving the socio-economic status of rural women by providing them the funds to start income generating projects so that they dont have to rely solely on subsistence farming as their source of income. Studies have shown that improving the socio-economic status of women in the developing world is key to ending global poverty and also strengthens the entire community. The following are some of the positive outcomes that are linked to improving the socio-economic status of women:

  • Food security
  • Families can afford to send their children to school
  • Family health improves
  • Reduction in the spread of HIV/AIDS 
  • Economically stronger and more stable communties

In keeping with the focus of this project we are pleased to announce the launching of a Sewing program in Manzvire village. Our vision for the Sewing program is to teach disadvantaged women sewing skills. Giving women sewing skills provides them an alternative means of earning an income. This ensures that they will have money to support their families even if the area experiences prolonged droughts. The women will be taught how to make school uniforms, dresses, trousers, skirts and shirts. We are happy to bring Robert (the instructor) on board to lead this program. We are very proud of him as he has a great passion to empower women and young people in these rural areas with sewing skills. Even though he doesn't have a building, this doesnt deter him, he teaches sewing from a store front. In addition, he doesn't have any sewing patterns, instead he uses a blackboard mounted on the store front wall to show the different parts of a garment to the women. Once they understand the structure of a garment he shows them how to cut the material.
The Tekeshe Foundation donated $65 to the project. You can see in these pictures the 6 women who participate in the project receiving 65 meters of sewing material from a staff member of the Tekeshe Foundation. We will also donate 4 sewing machines, currently they only have one sewing machine. The total cost of the 4 sewing machines is $200.00.

May your hearts be filled with joy as you take a look at the pictures of the women whose lives are being changed because of your generosity!

Thanks again for all your help.

Best wishes,

Thelma

Women Ecstatic To Receive Sewing Material
Women Ecstatic To Receive Sewing Material
Women Ecstatic To Receive Sewing Material
Women Ecstatic To Receive Sewing Material
Women Ecstatic To Receive Sewing Material
Women Ecstatic To Receive Sewing Material
Women Participating In Mushroom Project
Women Participating In Mushroom Project

The majority of women in the rural areas of Chipinge are disadvantaged educationally and economically. They rely solely on small scale farming as their source of income. Sadly, this area experiences recurrent droughts which leave the women with no crops. As a result they have no income to support their families. This project aims to improve the socio-economic status of rural women by providing them the funds to start income generating projects so that they can earn money to take care of their families.

In keeping with this focus we launched a mushroom project in 2012. Our approach was to train the trainer first. Seven women in the village participated in the project. They received training on how to grow mushrooms. As you can see from the pictures, everything was going well initially. The women were excited about the project as they started harvesting and selling the mushrooms.

What went wrong?

Sustaining the project became a challenge due to lack of funds. Inorder for the project to succeed we needed a borehole as mushrooms require a lot of water. We also needed a refrigerator because mushrooms are highly perishable. The funds received from selling the mushrooms were not sufficient to sustain the project. When the project was already underway, we received feedback from the community leaders that mushrooms dont grow well in the area due to scarcity of water. 

Though this project failed there were valuable lessons learned. Here are some of those lessons:

  • We learned that sustainability is very critical to the success of a project. It should be integral to the project planning process
  • We learned the importance of involving the community when deciding which projects to launch. The community knows the area well and also knows which projects are viable.
  • We learned that projects should be community led. When the community feels a sense of ownership of the project, the likelihood of the project being sustainable is very high. 
  • A project manager must provide project oversight
  • The project manager should be selected by the community and should be passionate about the project

Going Foward Using Lessons Learned 
We learn through our failures. The lessons learned are helping us take better action going forward. We have since launched a very successful chicken project. Six women are currently participating in the project. I attribute the success of this project to the lessons learned!

Best wishes,

Thelma

Women Participating In Mushroom Project
Women Participating In Mushroom Project
Women Participating In Mushroom Project
Women Participating In Mushroom Project
Chicken Project
Chicken Project
Community Gardening Project
Community Gardening Project

We would like to express our sincere gratitude to you for your continued support of this project. Women are the foundation of every society and yet the vast majority of rural women are disadvantaged educationally and economically.

Empowering disadvantaged rural women by introducing income generating projects is at the heart of our organization and is our strategy for alleviating hunger and poverty and promoting self-sufficiency. We strongly believe that improving the socio-economic status of women in the developing world is key to ending global poverty and to improve women's health. Improving the socio-economic status of disadvantaged rural women not only empowers them to live up to their full potential but it also strengthens the entire community. According to statistics, the following are some of the positive outcomes that are linked to improving the socio-economic status of women:

  • Food security
  • Families can afford to send their children to school
  • Family health improves
  • Reduction in the spread of HIV/AIDS 
  • Economically stronger and more stable communties

We are pleased to announce that in addition to assisting 6 women with the Chicken Project we are also assisting women in Rimbi village with a Community Gardening Project. According to research, the following are some of the benefits of community gardening projects:

  • Increased food security
  • Better nutrition as gardens provide fresh vegetables
  • Improved physical fitness since the process of gardening involves physical exercise
  • Stronger family and social relationships as the community gardening project also serves as a support group 

To date the Tekeshe Foundation gave $200.00 to the women paricipating in the gardening project. The money helped them purchase fertlizer, seeds and much needed gardening equipement. Here is what the project leader had to say:

"I would like to thank the donors for supporting our gardening project. Your help came just in time as we were about to abandon the project because of lack of funds. We were overjoyed when the Tekeshe Foundation offered to help us. This garden means a lot to us as we are able to feed our children from the vegetables we get from this garden. We will not disappoint you - we will work very hard to make sure the project is successful. Thank you for helping us."


As you can see from these pictures the garden is flourishing. In these pictures you can also see the kids who participate in our Youth program helping the women water the vegetables. This really encouraged the women. We are really proud of the kids in our Youth program for lending a hand.


Thank you so much for making a difference to disadvantaged rural women.

 

Best wishes,

Thelma

Community Gardening Project
Community Gardening Project
Community Gardening Project
Community Gardening Project
Kids In Our Youth Program Lending A Hand
Kids In Our Youth Program Lending A Hand
The Six Women Who Participate In The Project
The Six Women Who Participate In The Project

Thank you so much for your continued support of this project. Improving the socio-economic status of rural women is at the heart of our organization. Women in the rural areas of Zimbabwe bear almost all responsibility for meeting the basic needs of the family. According to statistics, improving the socio-economic status of women not only benefits the immediate family, but benefits the entire community. The following are some of the positive outcomes that are linked to improving the socio-economic status of women:

  • With increased incomes the women are in a better position to feed their families
  • Families can afford to send their children to school
  • Improved family health
  • Reduction in the spread of HIV/AIDS 
  • Economically stronger and more stable communties

Update On The Chicken Project

The Chicken project is going strong. The women are ready to begin construction on the bigger chicken coop which will have several compartments. Having the bigger coop will help tremendously as the women will have a continuous supply of chickens to sell. There will be no time lag between when the women sell all the chickens and when they purchase the next batch. They will place the new chicks in one compartment and put the older chickens in another compartment. Here is a progress report from the project manager:

In Her Own Words: Progress Report By The Project Manager:

"We bought our fifth and sixth batches of chickens. We made a profit of $120.00 from batch five, and a profit of $108.00 from batch six. From the total sales of the chickens from these two batches we each received $38.00. We have $80 dollars in the project account.

Thank you very much for supporting us! This year there is a drought in our area as a result we ended up with no crops. This money we earned from selling the chickens helped us buy food so we can feed our children and grand children."

 

Breakdown Of New Chicken Coop Construction Costs

2,000 bricks             $110.00
20 bags of cement    $220.00
Roofing material        $225.00
Sand                          $60.00
Door frames & doors    $40.00
Nails                           $10.00
Planks                         $36.00
Builder's charges         $160.00

Total:                         $861.00

 

Once again thank you so much for your support. Together we are transforming the lives of these women and putting them in a better position to help their families. We couldnt have done this without your help!

Best wishes,

Thelma

The Women Clearing The Location For The New Coop
The Women Clearing The Location For The New Coop
The Women Standing At The Current Coop
The Women Standing At The Current Coop
The Women Standing At The Current Coop
The Women Standing At The Current Coop
Women holding chickens
Women holding chickens

Thank you so much for your continued support of this project. We are pleased to announce that the "Chicken Project" is a big sucess. To date the six women who are participating in the project have bought 4 batches of chicks (100 chicks per batch). To date the women made a profit of $600.00. They divided the money among themselves resulting in each woman receiving $100 from selling the chickens. The women are very grateful to have have earned some money to help their families. This money goes a long way in these rural areas. Here is what some of the women had to say:

In Their Own Words

"We are very grateful to the donors for helping us. This money helped us a lot. This project has really lifted up our spirits.  I cant find the words to adequately express how we feel.  I take care of two grand children. With this money I was able to buy food and medicines for my grandchildren. Thank you so much for giving us the money to start the project. This project has changed our lives!

 

"I also want to thank the donors for all their help. With the money I earned I was able to buy school supplies and food for my family.

 

"I didnt know where I was going to get money to pay may son's exam fee. This money came in handy.  Thank you so much for helping us"

 

"With the money I earned I was able to buy food and shoes for my children. I thank the donors for all their kindness. I feel fortunate to be among the women who were chosen to participate in this project"

What We Are Planning For 2016

  • Build a bigger chicken coop with several compartments. This way the women dont have to wait until they have sold all the chickens inorder for them to purchace the next batch. They will place the new chicks in one compartment and put the older chickens in another compartment.
  • Raise egg laying chickens as well

As you can see from the attached pictures and from what the women had to say, you are playing a major role in tranforming their lives.

Thank you so much for all your support!!!

Happy New Year!

Best wishes,

Thelma

Women Showing Off Their Chickens
Women Showing Off Their Chickens
New Coop Will Be Built Where We Are Laying Rocks
New Coop Will Be Built Where We Are Laying Rocks
New Coop Will Be Built Where We Are Laying Rocks
New Coop Will Be Built Where We Are Laying Rocks
 

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Tekeshe Foundation

Location: North Chelmsford, MA - USA
Website: http:/​/​www.tekeshe.org
Project Leader:
Thelma Sithole
North Chelmsford, MA United States

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.