Mauritius – Veronique Celestin

Date: September 19, 2018
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I will always be thankful to Gender Links and those people I met on my way.”

One of the most memorable experienced with Gender Links is our first meeting where all of the survivors tell their own story, where I tell my story to others who was just like me. I felt free and all of us cried. It was a defining moment to me.  

Gender Links taught me how to stand on my own two feet, taking my little enterprise seriously. Through this experience, Gender Links open my mind to others sufferings. Even though I am unable to read, I am not afraid to step forward, open up to people and stand up for myself. 

This programme has changed me for the best. I was a wary, reticent and cautious person who never opens up to anyone. They showed me the importance of speaking out. After the summit, where I came out as a winner in the category Emerging entrepreneur, I had some radio and television broadcasting, I had to speak out, open up.

Gender Links have three quarter credit for my transformation, they showed me how to stand up for myself, show my qualities and most importantly how to open up and talk more. Anushka Virahsawmy was the one who always comforted me when something was wrong, she had the right words, she was the one who made me more confident.  

Gender Links, through the Entrepreneurship courses, taught me the packaging methods, accounting, marketing techniques and how to show my qualities but most importantly to stand on my feet. I am now a happy and independent woman. Danny, mostly known as Fidou, is a social worker who helped me a lot. She was always on my side for the paper works, encouraged me through difficult moment, encouraged me to be who I am today, an independent woman, who stand on her own feet and have confident to step forward. 

The biggest challenge for me was the fact that I was not able to read. It was hard for me during the courses and the preparation of my enterprise. Fortunately I have friends and my children who always help me. Unfortunately this is still a problem.  My future plan is to launch my business and sell on a larger scale with use of advertising.