Cottage industries offer hope to vulnerable women in rural areas
With a big smile and kind welcoming words, Asmaa received the Syrian Arab Red Crescent volunteers at her small workplace that she has dedicated to make dairy products and generate good income to afford her family.
In Rural Dara, the mother of four children and the only breadwinner of her family had suffered hard times during the Syrian protracted crisis. She hardly could meet the daily basic needs of her family.
In the few past years, Asmaa had her time dedicated to her children and work. She was making dairy products and sell them, but the business was too small to meet the growing needs of her family and that made her largely depend on the assistance provided by her relatives.
The children’s needs increased and she wanted to shoulder the responsibility by herself. Luckily, the Syrian Arab Red Crescent volunteers reached her during an assessment field visit planned by the livelihood program and dedicated to providing cottage industries grants to the due people. Asmaa was among those people who met the selection criterion. She received the grant that consisted of two shaking machines, 3 pots, plastic buckets, 3 fabric bags, cooker, electronic scales, and other needed utensils.
She had all the needed tools to start her own business and change her living conditions. The grant offered her a great opportunity to do her work with passion and ensure a dignified life for her children, who have nobody to support but their mother. She is the only lifesaver and supporter leading them to a better future.
“I just want to be the only breadwinner for my family,” said Asmaa with strong determination to bear the huge responsibility of her children and to reduce the burdens of her relatives, who were always assisting her. The woman has her ambitions to expand the business and to have a dairy shop. She will name it after her elder daughter, Bouadi.
It is worth mentioning that the cottage industries project, implemented for the first time by SARC in Syria, has targeted 100 breadwinner women who have experience in the food industries. The project, supported by the ICRC, is aimed at empowering those women and supporting them to generate constant income to afford their families.