Zimbabwe: Nyaradzo Masamba

Zimbabwe: Nyaradzo Masamba

Date: March 22, 2016
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The name Gender Links (GL) brings memories of how I learnt about equality between man and women. No one should be restricted from doing certain types of jobs because of their sex.

The Zvimba Rural District Council (ZRDC) introduced me to GL in July 2014. I managed to attend all the stages and they were quite relevant to me. The training helped me to see another way of fighting domestic violence. I used to think that I should focus on just forgetting the experience. However during the training I discovered that I needed to do something that occupies my mind. For this reason I had to attend all the three phases in order to faithfully follow through the entire course. I found nothing least useful.

Before I joined the GL training I was into vending business, selling second hand clothes, airtime and beverages. I would do door to door selling clothes in my community. I was lacking the discipline of an entrepreneur and this affected the efficiency of my operations. I could not separate my personal life and business. After attending the training I started applying the business concepts as I learnt and the business started to grow. I have managed to increase the variety of my products. The business is now stable and running smoothly and I am enjoying the benefits.

The training programme changed the way l perceived business. The primary goal of doing business was to get food on my table and for that reason l could not separate my private life and my business. ZRDC is assisting us (GL training programme participants) by offering us part time jobs. I have managed to open a bank account and I am using the account in my business.

I experienced GBV from my brother in law after the death of my husband. He started victimising me and took away the estate from me. He did this despite the fact that I had two minor children to take care of. He blamed me for causing the death of his brother. This stopped when I moved back to my parents’ home but I had been living with the trauma of what I had gone through. Since l moved to my parents’ house there has been a disconnection between my children and their father’s family. This has eradicated chances of experiencing violence from any member of the family. Through the training I have managed to get rid of the trauma. Economic empowerment has helped me to forget my past experience. I am now able to provide for my family.

I am in the process of building my house at the stand which I had bought before the training programme. This and the fact that all my children are going to school has made people in my community not to look down upon me. A certain woman came to me and praised me for my efforts and achievements. I am also influencing other people to start their own businesses. Previously they used to look down upon me and they would avoid me because I was a burden unto them. I was depending mainly on donations and borrowings. I am sharing with other women on matters to do with both gender based violence and entrepreneurship. My courage and hardworking inspire men and women alike.

In the training l learnt how to do market research, record keeping and how to market my products. I am using these business concepts and I will continue to use them because I am seeing positive results. My future plans involve completing my three bedroom house. By the year 2030 I should be having a car, shop and employing a number of people. I would like to thank GL for their efforts. I now have self-confidence and hoping for a bright future.