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Evelyn’s Dreams: An Education & Sewing Machine for Small Business

Evelyn, 24 | May 2012 Graduate, Mumosho Sewing Workshop

Evelyn’s mother thought she had no other way to support her daughter’s education than to sell her land, land rights that for a woman in Congo are precious and rare. After her husband was killed in the 1996 war, Evelyn’s mother was granted the land by her late husband’s family, because she had sons to inherit the property when they came of age.

But it is her daughter who is strong, determined and finding a way to educate herself without giving up their land, farmland her mother and family harvest to support themselves and send her brothers to school.

To the soundtrack of children shrieking in play, chickens clucking nearby, and the occasional rumble of thunder from an approaching storm, Evelyn shares her dreams.  At 24, she hopes to marry someday, but as much as marriage is viewed as security here, it is not her priority. Instead, she is diligently learning to sew at the Mumosho Sewing Workshop to make sure she is able to take care of herself, to continue taking care of the household. Her mother is her inspiration, an educated, strong woman who refuses to marry again and risk a man who will take the few things she has, but instead is doing everything it takes to educate and provide for her children.

Evelyn is grateful for the opportunity to study for free at the Sewing Workshop, and to the supporters of Action Kivu who make that possible. She is one of the graduating class this summer, and says, “If I am lucky to get a sewing machine, I will start a small business at home. Apart from that, I am still eager, I still wish to go back to school and get a secondary school diploma.  So I have two dreams, those are my two big dreams.”

Please consider donating toward Evelyn’s dreams! Each sewing kit costs $175 and includes a sewing machine, fabric, thread, scissors and more. No donation is too small, and almost 100% goes directly to the women and children’s programs. It is because of you that Evelyn will fulfill her vision of an education and encourage other women in her community by her example.  In the midst of fighting and uncertainty, these women are making a difference in their lives, and by doing so, in their community, and finally, in Congo.

(Read more about the success of last year’s Sewing Workshop graduates here.)

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