You Are Helping Young Women in Africa Start Businesses

10/16/18
 
Grace never thought she would become a successful businessowner. Surviving was hard enough.  
 
Grace was born into a family of six brothers and two sisters. She and her siblings struggled to make ends meet because they were raised by their single mother. It meant she had to help her mother with the chores at home and help raise her siblings.  
 
That’s when Grace came into Children of the Nations' child sponsorship program, where generous donations from people like you made it possible for her to have food, clean water, Bible studies, and an education.
 
Grace
                    Generous people like you made sure Grace’s basic needs were provided for. 
 
Once she was done with high school, COTN gave Grace the opportunity to go to vocational school, where she trained as a designer. However, upon completing the course, Grace did not have the money to start the business. She started saving money in the hopes of one day opening her own tailoring business.     
 
Grace shows off a dress       Grace shows off one of the dresses that she made after completing vocational school. 
 
Then COTN offered to enroll Grace in Business Connections, a program that is only possible thanks to the support of people like you. Business Connections allows college students to take out a micro-loan in order for them to start a business of their choice. Grace went through the training and managed to secure a loan, which she used to set up her tailoring shop. 
 
Grace at work on the sewing machine
Grace used the skills she learned at vocational school along with the loan and business training she received from Business Connections to start her own tailoring shop! 
 
Today she is able to keep the business running, and she has managed to pay back her loan in full! She is also able to send some of her siblings to school and buy some food and supplies for her family. 
 
“I thank COTN for giving me an opportunity that is unforgettable,” Grace says. “I am very glad to be a part of this family that cares for me. And Business Connections has made me into the person I am today. I can make anything as long as I put my heart into it.”  
 
Grace holding a purse
      Grace makes and sells bags like this one. She dreams of becoming a famous designer. 
 
We are proud of the woman she has become, and we look forward to seeing her grow from a small businesswoman to having her own brand name as a designer. Thank you for helping Grace achieve her dreams!
 
Ireen Banda is a graduate of COTN–Malawi who now serves as our Communications and Events Officer in Malawi.