Business Development Groups key support for rural women
In the fertile district of Thatta in Sindh province, Aarab Solangi villagers love their land, soil and people. They share each other’s joys and sorrows.
Belonging to different religions, the villagers are attached to a great relationship with humanity. All of them participate in each other’s bliss on events like Eid, Holi and Christmas.
Although darkness as the area is without electricity, brightness in the hearts of people spread light. The life of this village is full of troubles, confusions and difficulties, but mutual consultation, strategies and decision-making process are always helpful for all possible solutions to existing worries, problems and difficulties.
Ittehad, the Aarab Solangi Village Organisation is, in fact, the true meaning of the endeavour. It is a glaring example of unity and harmony that a Business Development Group (BDG) has been set up for five families under the Sindh Government’s PPRP Programme
The breadwinner men of these families used to leave their homes early in the morning in search of labour, go to nearby villages, roam around city markets and stand near an under-construction building with a hope to find a job.
Though they used to get some money by loading crates on vehicles in the fruit and vegetable market, the meagre amount was spent on their lunch, tea and fare. Their pockets always remained empty.
Their faces show sorry stories when they return with empty pockets in the evening. Their eyes used to become full of tears and their courage shattered. The women from these families decided to support their men by coming forward.
Stabi, Shareefan, Kausar, Raheeman and Jannat Bibi started making baskets. They slewed clothes and did selling milk at the local level and made blankets. They did what they could. But they found it difficult to make ends.
But they used to say that patience always pays reward and trials and tribulations end at last no matter how much time they prolong. Then it happened the same. The support of the Sindh government did what brought a change as well as prosperity.
Then, as per plan, the group bought 12 calves with Rs240,000, built a shed with Rs12,000 and purchased pots for animal feeding with Rs6,000. They also erected a billboard outside the shed with Rs10,000 so that people could know about the endeavour. The remaining amount was spent on other necessary tasks.
The purchase of calves and construction of a shed was the first step towards the destination. This journey witnessed several moments of happiness and successes. Three of the calves were sold out for Rs400,000 when they grew up and purchased more cattle with this money.
The remaining six, out of nine calves, were used for farming. As a result, the income increased by four times. The cattle breeding increased the income significantly. Milk gained from these cattle was also used in the houses. It was sold in the market as well. After that, the fate of five families changed to the extent that the people started feeling envious.
This sequence did not end here. Not only Aarab Solangi Village but also more business groups were formed in other villages of Thatta. The overall concept of prosperity took the shape of reality.
Today, the prosperous families of District Thatta are treading the paths of successes in the form of business development groups. They are thankful to the sincere efforts of the Sindh government regarding poverty alleviation from the core of their hearts.