Fatema preparing delicious pastries from home
Dear global giving supporter,
I hope you and your family are doing well. Here in Imzouren, it is getting colder and colder! Children have to put on their hats and coats to go to school.
During the past 3 months, a lot has happened in our Family Strenghtening Program. The most important is that 6 families have become fully autonomous. This means that 6 mothers have regained confidence and are now independent, responsible head of their family. This also means that 10 children are saved, thanks to your support. They are staying with their mother, felling secure, attending school and considering their future serenely.
Each family we support has its own background story and path towards autonomy. Today I have decided to share with you the story of Fatema, which is on track to become fully autonomous soon, inchallah as we say here !
Fatema is widowed and mother of 3 children. When she entered the program at the end of 2011, she was feeling pretty lost. Her little one Khaoula was only 3 years old and needing a lot of attention, Dawya was 6, and Mehdi, the older one, was only 9 years old, too young to care for his sisters.
As soon as she entered the program, Fatema had the perfect mindset. She asked for support regarding schooling of her children and the opportunity to learn a skill that would enable her to earn money. Since she had a very low level of primary studies and loved to bake, she choose to follow a vocational training in bakery. In parallel, the program helped her with hygiene and food packages, and covering health and schooling expenses.
Fatema participated very seriously in the training, and she successfully passed the final exam. With her certificate, she also regained self-esteem and confidence. Fatema loves to learn: she is the most constant attendee to all the awareness sessions we organize regarding child protection, importance of schooling, children’s rights etc. When possible, she even comes along with her children to after-school classes. She very discreetly listens, willing to be able to understand better what they are learning at school.
After getting her bakery certificate, Fatema got the opportunity to join a cooperative of women. But she declined it, fearing that she would not be at home to take care of her very young children, who still needed a lot of care. So she had a very serious talk with Moulouda, our Program Officer.
“- Fatema, you have to set up your own Income Generating Activity from home if you want to be able to earn money and take care of your 3 children. The association won’t be there forever to help you
“- But I can’t go out of my house and look for clients Moulouda ! I am a widow… people will gossip if they see me on the street, in grocery shops, talking to men I don’t know”
Hearing this talk, young Mehdi went out for a while and when he came back home, he very proudly announced to his mother
“- I have discussed with 3 grocers, they will buy your bread every day mummy, you cann start tomorrow !”
How mature is this little boy who helps his mother in her first step towards independence!
Fatema followed an additional training on how to set up and manage an income generating activity and she started working from home, selling bread to these 3 grocers.
Now she is cooking all kinds of traditional – delicious – Moroccan pastries. Thanks to her son, she also found the strength to go out of her house to find new costumers. She has regular clients in Imzouren and in the nearby city of Al Hoceima. During the wedding season, or for religious celebrations, her order book is full! The word has spread that she is a very fine baker!
She is also a good manager who is very attentive to her recipes and margin. Her children are also doing well, very serious at school and the girls are particularly successful. Dawya is now 11, she wants to become a teacher. Khaoula is 8 and dreams of being a pediatrician: we wish them all the best!
As we are approaching the holiday season, I would like to take this opportunity to renew my gratitude for your support! Thanks to you, we are saving lives and keeping families together!
On behalf of the children, THANK YOU! (choukrane)