Initially there were about 180 women at the beginning of the project. However as the training went on and weeks passed by, their numbers dropped down to a steady number of 70 participants, which was expected. The class has now divided into two groups, the first we identified as mamas and the second group of younger participants as the girls. The Mama’s group come together on Mondays through to Wednesdays and the girls work together from Thursdays to Saturdays.
In addition, the project aims at empowering the participants to become financially self reliant. In order to reach this objective, participants have been practicing running soap making businesses in 4 different groups. As a result they are learning business management, team work and collaboration skills. In the past few months all groups have made soap, and have been able to put the money generated into more businesses.
Both groups are exceptionally motivated and eager to learn. So much so that they also bring their babies and young children with them as they acquire their new skills. Every discussion is infused with laughter and at times intense debate as they collectively form a more robust understanding of the topic at hand.
In the coming weeks, the participants will use the group money generated and break up into smaller groups of 2-3 to initiate small scale businesses under our supervision. We will be monitoring their progress and will closely follow up the process to and make sure they succeed.