Skills for rural women
“It makes me happy to see people wear the clothes I have stitched”
The Southern Area Development Project (SADP) has trained 130 rural women across 13 vocational training centers (VTCs) in D.I.Khan. The centres were established to equip women with sewing and cutting skills. This three-month training was offered to cater to local needs, thus ensuring that poor households benefit from the facilities offered, as far as possible.
Most women learn of the training courses offered by word of mouth, which help them fulfill their interest in sewing and stitching. Naureen is one of the many young women whose lives have changed for the better for having completed the course at a VTC in Mandra.
Naureen is from the village of Basti Darbar in Mandra. “I joined the VTC in our village because I dreamt of learning to sew and stitch so I might earn an income for my family,” she explains. “Thank God my dreams came true. Having acquired these vocational skills, I am now teaching other women in my village as a volunteer instructor.”
The center, which currently has 14 trainees from two different villages, is run by Sarwar Bibi, chairperson of the women’s community-based organization, Roshni Gharbi. She was also elected a general councilor in the recent local bodies’ elections in Mandra.
Naureen says she could not complete her education because the family was too poor and the village had no college. “But I was very keen to learn a vocational skill, which SADP then allowed me to do,” she says, adding, “I also trained my younger sister. Now, both of us earn an adequate income from our stitching skills.”
“It makes me happy to see people who wear the clothes I have stitched,” says Naureen. “I can bear my own expenses and share the burden of supporting the household with my father.”