One of the exciting new groups that SIA is partnering with this year is Progressive Volunteers, a Kenyan grassroots organization that coordinates local volunteers to improve the poorest communities in Nairobi. We supported them with a grant to purchase several sewing machines and to rent a training space for dressmaking, tailoring, and sewing machine handling classes.
Onyango, the project coordinator, reports on their great success so far in helping people get trained and employed:
“The training center project runs classes for single mothers and girls, to give them relevant tailoring skills to enable them get skilled employment from Ruaraka industries. The first phase of the project saw 43 women trained on embroidery and sewing skills. The second phase began in mid-August and will run till 19th December with 39 trainees.
“To date, 26 of the trained women and girls have managed to secure employment with Rafiki Clothing Industry as machine operators. Two of the trainees were retained in the training centre to help with the management of the centre. The rest of the trainees have been absorbed in private businesses in Kariobangi North and Mathare North markets. This is our success so far this year.” Congratulations to these women and the trainers!
In 2016, Progressive Volunteers hopes to help five women secure funding – grants or low-interest loans – to purchase sewing machines and start their own small tailoring businesses.
New Businesses in Malawi
A new round of Small Business Fund (SBF) groups in northern Malawi have submitted their business plans and received their initial $100 grant! The first three listed are being mentored by our newest SBF local Coordinator in Malawi, Hastings Phiri. We welcome and wish the best to these new businesses:
- Tyezee Bakery
- Mtenthe Winne Tea Shop
- Gregory Grocery Shop
- Monily Welding Shop
- Tawona Grocery
- Malonje Crop Sales
- Wangani Cattle Selling
- Towera Grocery