From selling Omena by the roadside to owning a retail shop

January 19, 2023by CREAW

Margaret, a resident of Bangladesh, Mombasa County is a charming, determined mother of three and an entrepreneur. She holds a bright vision of how her life and that of her kids will eventually turn out to be despite her rocky past.

Margaret is a survivor gender-based violence who while trying to fight for her marriage, spent a lot of time shuttling between the chief’s office and the police station to address the numerous domestic disputes. Despite her efforts, Margaret and her husband ended up going their separate ways.

It was around this time that Margaret met Joseph, a CREAW champion in Mombasa County, who introduced her to the Jasiri Fund program.

“The separation happened when I was most vulnerable and life turned to be very difficult. At CREAW, I was able to get help after narrating my experience as a GBV survivors and luckily managed to join the Jasiri Fund Program,” she explains.

Jasiri Fund’s objective is to support access to finance for survivors of Gender based violence as a means to strengthen survivors recovery and resilience in a sustainable manner. The program came through for Margaret when she needed it the most including trainings on financial literacy, business skills and life skills. She also got psychosocial support that helped her heal as well as gain inner courage and self-acceptance to the society.

The trainings from the program enabled her to grow and expand her fish(omena) selling business which was her first venture.

The mother of three received her first loan of Ksh20,000 which she used to diversify her business by setting up a retail shop selling cereals. A second loan of Ksh50,000 saw her expand her shop offerings to include general goods in addition to the cereals she was selling before. She also added a fresh juice bar to cater for the increased demand in the area.

With her newfound business acumen, Margaret does daily bookkeeping and is able to track her revenue, expenses and profits. She now posts a profit of Ksh1000 on a good day and Ksh500 on a bad day.

Margaret’s experience with Jasiri Fund has transformed her life to point she can identify herself as a successful and an entrepreneur woman.

“My advice to other women who are going through GBV and in bad relationships, remember that there is always a second chance for you. Do not be afraid to call for help, there are people and organisations like CREAW who can assist. Finally, have courage to take the step and make a difference in your life,” She concludes.