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Jenifer

Jenifer grew up in a neighboring village in a family of five children. She attended primary school until the age of sixteen when her mother passed away. Left without a mother and an alcoholic father, Jenifer married her husband that same year. She had three children, two of which have finished secondary and the other who is currently attending secondary. They are saving money to send their children to University but are unsure if they will be able to pay for all three of them so they plan on prioritizing one child.

Waking up at 6 am each morning, Jenifer works nearly all day. During the rainy season she earns money working on farms and making baskets when she has time. She only stops to eat food, if there is any, or when it becomes too dark to see her work clearly. When there is no rain is when life becomes the most difficult. In Kiumbe, the dry season lasts for a total of seven months, causing a lot of stress for families. There is very little food to harvest and they have to eat food they had stored earlier in the year. During those months Jenifer relies on her baskets to make money.

Before learning to crochet, Jenifer’s children used to be kicked out of school because they could not pay for the school fees. They used to be hit hard by the dry season but now they are able to buy and set aside food in advance. She used to only have two sets of clothing, one for work and one for going into town, but now she owns several different outfits.

Jenifer is thankful for the chance to be a part of such a successful group of women. She is thankful for good health, the wellbeing of her husband and children, and that they now have enough food to go around. She loves making her baskets, especially when she designs a new pattern that turns out nicely.

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