Razafindrakoto Sarindra Malala Tiana – Madagascar

Razafindrakoto Sarindra Malala Tiana – Madagascar

Date: November 25, 2015
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“I earned the respect of those around me”

Sarindra is one of the beneficiaries of the entrepreneurship project led by Gender Links (GL) in the rural council of Tsiafahy. Tsiafahy is located 15 kilometres from the capital city of Antananarivo and has been part of the COE initiative since 2010. Sarindra has one child and lives with her partner now. She joined the training in 2013 and she was present at all four stages of the training. She found the lessons and information transmitted during the training interesting on both a professional and private level. She applied and followed each module, and the result was quickly reflected in her life. In a few months she had developed her business and improved her standard of living.

The training was a great opportunity for Sarindra. Her mother raised her alone after the death of her father. Her mother did not have the financial means to enable her to continue her studies. Sarindra never saw her father but, according to her mother, he was a soldier who went to live in the city of Tuléar. Despite the efforts of her mother to send her to school, Sarindra stopped too soon and went to work to help her mother.

At the age of 12, Sarindra went to work in the city of Antananarivo. Her employers sent her to school; she continued to go to public school while she worked for them. Yet her mother was not on good terms with her employer. After just a few months, Sarindra had to quit school again and returned to live with her mother. At 14, she found a new job but could not continue as her mother was pregnant and could not support the family. In order to help her, Sarindra needed to work hard: washing up, watering neighbours’ vegetable fields and carrying bricks to earn money.

Later, Sarindra fell in love with her future husband with whom she had a child. Just a few months after their engagement, Sarindra fell pregnant. Her husband said he had found a job. He went to work the next day, but never returned home. Sarindra found herself alone with her baby who grew up and is now going to school.

Sarindra has always worked and since she was trained, she has developed her activities. She worked hard to complete the business plan established during the training. She has improved her business, which is based on the planting and sale of strawberries. In parallel, she is also doing livestock farming. With good calculations and taking note of her resources and expenditures, Sarindra mastered her finances and could make savings. After management lessons she took a risk and reinvested her earnings to develop her business which guaranteed her success.

This success story is appreciated by her entourage. Sarindra arouses curiosity in the neighbourhood and people ask her what she did to achieve success. She does not hesitate to give advice and is open to answering all the questions from her neighbours who formerly neglected her. Yet Sarindra encountered serious difficulties in attending the training. She needed to reorganise her schedule, especially for her child. At the beginning of the training she found it difficult to be in a small group and interact with the other participants and with the trainers. It was just like being in a school environment: take notes, listen, follow and participate. However, she took confidence from it and does not hesitate to help and give advice on the importance of financial independence for women and autonomy from the husband and parents because she was subjected to various kinds of violence by her former partner, deception, insults and moral violence at the time when she had financial difficulties.

Sarindra became curious and able to concentrate on what she does, unlike before when she had no belief in what she did. The access to technology, computers, internet, prestigious venues and meals and receptions in big hotels, gave experience to Sarindra and allowed her to feel more sure of herself. “I earned the respect of those around me”, she says. She no longer suffers violence and has built a new life. She is planning to develop other activities in relation to those she does presently and to have a happy and stable family.


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