Botswana: *Lindiwe

Botswana: *Lindiwe

Date: April 8, 2016
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The workshops have helped me a lot and I am now relieved of the burden I was carrying partly by writing my I story about our personal experiences. Meeting with other women helped me a lot especially with the problems that I was facing. This made me realize that my problem is minor compared to what some other women are experiencing in their lives.

I started attending Gender Links training workshops on the 25th of November 2014 and have attended all the workshops.  I want to further my studies and focus on my business so that I can manage to save money.  I have learned that one has to budget first before spending money.  My spending money behavior has improved and I avoid buying things that are unnecessary.  I am currently selling my goods on a cash basis or my customers must at least give me a deposit before I release goods.

Before these workshops I was selling sweets and cigarettes but currently I am selling beauty products, ladies hand bags and also loan people money.  We were taught to save proceeds from the business and to refrain from using the money we have made. When I started the business my husband is the one who gave me money to buy stock. He is now in a better space and we are currently fighting gender based violence together.

My husband was abusing me and I had to report my every move; like when I attended the training.  This has changed and he respects me now and he knows that I have rights too. I now have a good relationship with my husband and I am at peace with our past and he is now being supportive. He is happy with the current state of our relationship.

During these training sessions all the women spoke about problems which are affecting them and that made me realise that as women we are faced with different challenges every day. I am now able to assist other women when they are faced with challenges such as abuse and advise them to exercise their rights, to speak out when they are being abused and to refer them to appropriate institutions for support.

I have learned that women have a right to be living in better conditions instead of being abused. There are many ways from which woman can get help.

Since the workshops I have learned that learning can be free and it is never too late to go back to school. I am planning to register my business and get a certificate and am currently looking for a place where I will operate my business from. I would like to see my business being well established. My dream is to own a big house and an expensive car.