After Her Father Falls Ill, a 14 Year Old Girl Must Pay for Family Expenses

Poverty Reduction
UNDP Afghanistan / Photo Credit: Engr. Kabir: Markaz Wolluswaly Kang village, Nimroze Province: Farzana’s Vocational Tailor Training Project

“My father was the only person feeding our family. Before he was young and healthy and was able to sell our vegetables and fruits at the bazaar.” But this is not the case now as Farzana Hazarath, a 14 year old girl from Kang district of Nimroz province in southwest Afghanistan, explains.

Ghulam Hazarath, Farzana’s father suddenly fell ill last year and is now unable to work as much as he did farming the crops of their land. Farzana does not have a brother and her father’s income alone is not enough to provide for raising six girls and an extended family.

Highlights

  • Within six months Farzana’s was able to sew top quality clothing for women and make 20,000 AFN (approximately USD $365) per month
  • NABDP provided 19 other women like Faranza with vocational training, basic education (basic reading and math) useful in running a micro-enterprise business, as well as a sewing machine and an iron.
  • In total, NABDP has spent USD 2.6m on 86 women’s empowerment projects across Afghanistan, impacting 3,271 women and 19,626 members of their family – a meager investment of just over $113 per person.
  • In Nimroz province, NABDP has been able to provide vocational training to 120 women – impacting 870 people – in five projects.

As the eldest child, it was clear that Farzana would be “the only one to help my father during this extremely difficult time.”Overnight, she became responsible for taking care of the lion’s share of her family’s expenses. She says in June 2012 “when NABDP started the tailoring course in our village, we found the best opportunity to improve our livelihood”.

Within six months Farzana’s talent blossomed and she was able to sew top quality clothing for women. A normal outfit sells for 400 Afghanis (approximately USD $7.00), and Farzana can sew up to three outfits a day. In the last few months, she has made 20,000 Afghanis (approximately USD $365) per month – more than enough to help her family. Her father does not have to work anymore and he sometimes even jokes that “she is now the boss of the family”.

Because of the tailoring course offered in Farzana’s village by NABDP, she has been able to bring her family from barely-making-ends-meet to being able to afford luxuries such as access to 24 hour electricity – something they could never afford before. Access to electricity enables Faranza to work on projects whenever she has time, and to train her sisters how to sew as well. It also allows the girls the ability to study at home.

District Development Assemblies identify the needs of the community and put forward the names of the women whose families have agreed to let them participate in the vocational trainings. In this training, NABDP provided 19 other women like Faranza with vocational training, basic education (basic reading and math) useful in running a micro-enterprise business, as well as a sewing machine and an iron.

In an insecure province such as Nimroz, NABDP has been able to provide vocational training to 120 women – impacting 870 people – in five projects. This project, which cost USD $7,109, in Markaz Wolluswaly Kang village was funded by UNDP, while four other vocational projects in the province were funded by the Japanese government.

In total, NABDP has spent USD 2.6 million on 86 women’s empowerment projects across Afghanistan, impacting 3,271 women and 19,626 members of their family – a meager investment of just over $113 per person.

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