We will be deactivating this program today. We are quite pleased with the number of women we were able to train and happier still that some of them have jobs now and are working as drivers. It's encouraging as well that the women have formed a savings cooperative and plan to purchase a taxi themselves. That is all great stuff. You can keep up with future progress here at GlobalGiving and via our other projects. We will have other projects like this soon, we may even start another taxi driving class next year, after we've finished helping the current graduates gain employment.
I was delighted to attend a ceremony for the first graduating class of women that took place in Nepal last month. 68 women graduates were all there. Of the 68 who completed the course, only 3 were still having problems getting a drivers license. 4 were now employed full-time as drivers and the rest have started a savings cooperative into which each will put some money. When there is enough money, they will buy a taxi, then 4 of the women will operate that taxi and use the income to help buy another one until all have work.
The course they completed covered how to drive a car, how to repair a car and personal self-defense. We plan to start another class for 32 more women in May. See the photos from the ceremony.
Driving school is now underway in Nepal with the first class of women. The women are learning auto mechanics, how to drive safely, the rules of the road and personal self defense. This is the first ever program of its kind to be offered in Nepal and the goal is to teach 1000 women to be taxi drivers, an occupation from which they can earn money and support themselves. Studies of traffic accidents in Nepal have shown that women are safer drivers than men but in the past they've not had an opportunity to drive as an occupation due to a lack of training for women drivers. We're creating history by training them to drive, to fix a car and to defend themselves.
The first class, consisting of 36 women, is now underway.
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