May 26th marked the beginning of financial freedom for vulnerable women from Nairobi’s informal settlements as CMS-Africa in partnership with Jali Africa engaged over 25 women in Women Training Workshop at the St Teresa’s Catholic Church in Eastleigh, Nairobi.
The objective of the training was to empower women in informal settlements with basic business skills to develop small enterprises from which to meet basic needs for themselves and their families. The programme took place for three days, from 26th to 28th May. The workshop was attended by 25 participants, 3 facilitators, 2 hosts and Women Training Coordinator, Lucy Ochieng.During the training, the ladies were happy to learn new skills and ideas which they desired to apply in their enterprises. that will enable them meet their needs and families. We interviewed three ladies who had attended the programme and got to learn how they benefited from it.Our first interviewee was Cynthia Muhonja and this is what she said, ‘Am happy to attend this programme because it has helped me a lot through the business skills taught to us. My passion has been to study hairdressing and set up a saloon business of my own, and I can see God fulfilling this dream for me.
I am a mother of one child and I intend to raise her in a more comfortable environment when my plans push through. I would also like to advice my fellow friends out there to be attending such programmes because they are helpful’.
Elizabeth Mukonyo: ‘I am excited to have attended this women programme because it has empowered me on how I can set up a business of my own and make it successful.I have a passion in weaving women’s clothes and am planning to start a business in our area given that such businesses are on demand. I would also like to encourage youths out there not to idle around, but to attend such programmes which will enhance them to make something good out of their lives and not just depend on parents’.
Our last interviewee was Mary Nthenya and this is what she had to say, ‘am a form four leaver but have been doing some part time jobs in hotels to sustain myself and family. Since I started attending this programme, I have learned a lot especially in business planning and management.
My future plan is to do catering and start a food and beverage business. This has been my passion for a long time and through this training I have learned that nothing is impossible as long as one dedicates and commits themselves.Am happy and grateful for the facilitators and the commitment they have put into making this happen’.
Jali Africa, the convenor of the training is a community based organisation with an initiative that responds to the needs of the children and women in the Mathare and Korogocho slum areas of Nairobi.