Mampho Ntho – Lesotho

Mampho Ntho – Lesotho

Date: December 3, 2015
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Nothing is impossible, nor is the reduction of gender based violence

“If it was not for Gender Links (GL) I do not think I would have been able to own a computer, I still cannot believe that it is mine. Now it is so easy to do my budgets and all the business transactions”

All she could remember was sitting on the ground outside the council writing her story. She was told to write and she was very emotional when writing, but at the same time it was like therapy because after submitting her story she felt better. There were more than 15 participants and everybody looked so emotional and was concentrating on their stories. At that moment she realised that she was not the only one who was abused.

Mampho Ntho was only a house wife who would just wait for her husband to send her money so that she could take care of the children’s basic needs. When she attended the Gender Links (GL) training she was a person who did not do anything. Ntho first encountered GL when she wrote her “I” story. She managed to attend all the three phases of training. During the three phases she was able to learn many things. She learnt new skills and about changing her attitude; that is when she decided to start a business because she had ideas as well as a business plan. People in her village told her that it would not be possible for her to have a successful business because she did not have any money, but she knew there was absolutely nothing that could stop her from becoming what she wanted to be.

She borrowed some money from her sister and she planted vegetables; they were very good and she was able to do proper market research. Within no time people from all over wanted to buy her produce and she was making a lot of money. She had to hire two women and one man to help her. Their lives changed for the better as they were able to buy food for their children. She was so happy that she had succeeded because most people said she would not make it and she wanted to prove them wrong. She also wanted to show them that the GL training she had attended had played a very important role in her life and had changed her.

Ntho also went for internet technology (IT) training which she found very useful and she thought it would help her a great deal to record her business transactions on a laptop. She knew how much the laptop would cost and she did not care because she wanted to have it and was willing to work hard no matter what it took as long as she could buy a laptop. Since the business was doing very well she was able to save and she managed to buy laptop. She asked somebody to help her just to show her the basics, including the ones she learnt from the GL training, and she end up doing her reconciliations in excel on her computer. “If it was not because of GL I do not think I would have been able to own a computer, I still cannot believe that it is mine. Now it is so easy to do my budgets and all my business transactions,” Ntho said.

She added that the change in her has affected people close to her so much as she is now able to help them whenever they need help. She used to be very moody and would sometimes cry without reason and her children would be stressed because they did not know what was wrong with their mother. One child, Nthabiseng, confirmed that her mother’s life has changed tremendously: “our mother is now able to pay our school fees on time and before she attended the training she could not afford them, and therefore was always late, and we were even expelled from school, but now we are no longer expelled from school, because she is always on time,” Nthabiseng observed.

Her councillor, Manketsi Molapo, also confirmed that Ntho’s life has changed a great deal and she could not stop praising GL. She highlighted the fact that they never thought Ntho could be the vegetable supplier in this area and would stop nagging people to borrow money as she previously did. Now she is so busy that people go days without seeing her. She has changed her life and motivated so many people in her community; apparently everybody now wants to be in business and she has motivated them. Ntho added that one of the things she learnt during the training is selflessness and that is what has helped her to be like this. She assists everybody who wants to start their own business and she even shares notes she got from the training.

Her biggest dream is to see the level of gender based violence reduced in Thabana-Morena. She also wants people to report it so as to help the government with the reduction of abuse. She concluded by encouraging all men in Thaba-Morena to respect their partners and treat them like equal partners and also to encourage people not to feel embarrassed when abused but to go and report it.


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