I am Dil Maya, 32 years old. My permanent residence is Sarlahi district southern part of Nepal. We came to Kathmandu 10 years back with the hope that we will get a good job. I have 5 years old daughter and she is going to the School studied at UKG. My husband is working at a sculpture-making factory.
I’ve changed my life. When I look back, I remember those difficult days when it was hard to laugh. But after being selected as a treasurer by Keshav, I was nervous, and he and the group motivated me to fulfill my responsibilities. Without Keshav’s and the women-group encouragement I’ve never reached this life today.
I read and write easily, but I’m unconfident with numbers. So keeping all financial records of the group is not an easy task. I was scared, but I have the commitment to do the task. Keshav taught me a lot.
He always told me that this was a great opportunity to learn, and he was right. I had a great opportunity to learn every time, I did my tasks ex. my passbooks.
My passbooks is a part off the practical, wich have learnt me a lot. I learnt how to fill the saving passbooks, how to make loan, and how to make transparent etc.
The most important learning was kept transparent when we keep everything transparent then I feel that the group is bonding.
I am doing my duty honestly with every saving and repayment meeting. Now I fill the passbook saving, loan ledger and saving ledger. This is my ‘golden opportunity.’ My skills is improving – from this opportunity.
I am not educated, I am just literate but I learn these skills from the WAWCAS training.
I learn more by doing my tasks in practical. Thanks to all my WAWCAS group members who have trusted me with this opportunity. Thank you for the support to our trainer Keshav.
Among many new things, I learned many new things and new experiences after being a member of WAWCAS. , PCA is the one. PCA is very new to me including everyone. During the training when we first conducted the PCA it was very new to us because we never keep a record of our income and expenses. During the discussion, it was touched my heart that we should expense as per our income otherwise we will be ruined by credits. Through PCA it shows clearly the picture of my income and expenses. I learn from this exercise was where have I spent unnecessary expenses, how do I minimize those expenses and it also shows where do I need to expense more.
Every three months we are conducting this exercise which has helped me a lot. I have minimized a lot through deducting expenses from mobile recharge and alcohol consumption.When we did PCA together with my husband he really realized how much money has he spent buying alcohols and he was shocked he himself started to minimize the alcohol consumption. We have realized that we have not to spend the necessary amount for my daughter’s education and we have spent more on my daughter’s education (buying stationary and for School tiffin). As a result, my daughter’s education has been improved a lot. While doing PCA exercise with Keshav he always gives feedback and suggestions which has helped a lot of my life and open my inner eyes. Through these exercises, it gives a vivid picture of our real income and expenses which has boosted us how to save more and earn more. After these exercises, I can manage more saving day by day. I will continue myself to do these exercises and it has taught me that look my throat before I swallow the bone. This exercise brings very positive changes in my life.
Shristi B.K is my daughters name, she is 6 years old and studies at Global Academy, Lalitpur in grade 1. I came to Kathmandu city in the hope of good education for my child and some income generating activities. Today I am very happy as I am able to earn money of my own business. Which gives me the opportunity to send my daughter to school, and she’s even doing well with her studies.
Before joining WAWCAS I was struggling to earn money and couldent afford sending my daughter to a good School. Unfortunately my daughter’s performance in studies was poor, so I was very worried about her performance and how to improve it. The other challenge for me was to encourage her to go to school daily and not skip classes. I wanted to beat her a lesson of skipping school, but whenever I felt like raising my hands on my daughter, I thought about all the discussions that we did about child rights and child development. I was sure that beating up small children is not the solution of any problem. So, I will never beat her. I will Rather start explaining my daughter the importance of education and give her more time. I am starting to listening to her opinions. Every evening I will ask her what she learnt in school. After new methods off listening and supporting, my daughter started going regularly to school and even did improvement in her classes. Now, I started investing more on my daughter’s education. Now a days, the total expenditure of books, copies and lunch for her is around Rs.4500 per month. I am happy because I can see the improvement in her studies. Before WAWCAS I hardly spent 15,00 per month for books, copies and lunch.
Nowadays after coming from school I don’t have to tell her to do anything. She herself eats lunch, starts doing her homework and studying. I feel very satisfied now, seeing my daughter happily going to school. In the recent exam she had in her school, she scored the highest marks in her class. I started from being very worried off my daughter skipping school to a daughter doing well in school – what a positive development, it makes me very relived.
Last month I was discussing things with Keshav and agreed how difficult it was to manage the home with only one business. It was becoming very difficult to pay my children’s school fees and cover their other needs as well. So Keshav motivated me to start an additional business and I thought a lot about what I could do. One day after lunch, when I was washing the dishes at home, one of the neighbouring sisters came round and asked me if I was interested in working on making balls. I did not know anything about it, but since I am always interested in learning something new and working hard, I thought I could learn how to do it. So I asked her what was involved, and she told me that there would be one day of training the next day. Next day, feeling very excited, I went to the training venue, where there were other sisters who had also come to learn. I worked very hard and learned everything that was taught very carefully. Due to my hard work and dedication to learning, I was praised and told I was the best in the class. This gave me huge motivation and I was very happy. Right after the training, I was given the job of making balls. I am told the size of the ball that is required and I make it accordingly. All the raw materials needed to make the balls are provided by sir. I have been so good and consistent with my work that I am now sir’s right hand. This makes me very happy and proud.
I have utilized my time in the best possible way. After I cook food in the morning and send my daughter to school, I immediately start work. When I get spare time after taking care of the chickens, I start working again. Even after having dinner at night, I work for a while before sleeping. So this way, I don’t waste my time at all.
I have been utilizing my time in a very productive way making balls. I also earn an additional 15,000 to 16,000 a month, which has made it easy for me to manage my household. Now I can easily pay my child’s school fees and afford our other needs. I have become busy these days because of my additional business. One of the best things I have realized is that being busy helps us to become positive and happy, and have a goal-oriented life. We will not have spare time to think unnecessarily about any negative thoughts.Our mind will be at peace and only think about work. Moreover, based on my experience, I can say that it’s better to be engaged in an additional business. This way we will have two sources of income and can use our time productively by staying busy. I urge and motivate other sisters to get involved not just in one, but in an additional business as well, if possible.
When Keshav came to my place, I was happy, because whenever he visits, he provides very important messages that have helped me improve my business and social circumstances. Keshav observed my poultry farm and suggested that I put out an additional bowl of drinking water and feed, because the chicks are growing. He also gave me a manual about how to build up a profitable chicken farm.
Keshav asked me whether it is easier to stand on one leg or both legs. First, when I heard this, I laughed and immediately replied both legs, and also asked him why he put this question? Keshav said that running one business is like standing on one leg. If something happens, our business will vanish, so we also need to run an additional business for which we can use our time. Keshav asked what types of business I can add without any cost. I said that I can sell chicken meat, and I can also grow vegetables in my garden using chicken manure. Keshav discussed things in detail again and we developed an action plan together, which has helped me a lot. Therefore, from next week, I will start vegetable farming with my little plot of land. Apart from that, I will also do some handicraft production, which will help my economic condition.
Keshav left me with many ideas. I thought his visit was very helpful this time too – as always.
Among many IBT (Issue Based Training) topics, one of the most interesting was nutrition. I was so excited and focused while nutrition was being discussed because I had no idea about nutritious food. I was triggered when Keshav informed us that nutritious food was necessary for everyone, especially pregnant women, elderly people and children. He also told us that, duringpregnancy, the child gets the necessary nutrients from the mother herself, inside the womb. So it is very necessary for the pregnant woman to consume a balanced and nutritious diet in order to avoid malnutrition in both the mother and the unborn child. This is the stage where the child’s bones and muscle tissue start developing, so a balanced, nutritious diet that is seasonal and typical should be consumed. Carelessness in such matter can result in the death of the mother and the child.
Keshav also taught us that the food that we generally eat (Dal, Bhat and vegetables) is also nutritious. But we tend to eat more rice, and less pulse gravy and vegetables. The amount of pulse gravy and vegetables consumed should be increased to make our diet better balanced. Flatbreads are equally beneficial. It is better to consume different types of pulse gravy and vegetables rather than consuming the same thing every day. It is also good to use ghee or oil in the vegetables or the pulse gravy, as it also provides necessary nutrients for our body. Seasonal and locally available green leafy vegetables, beans, pulses and fruits should also be consumed. Actually, as I said before, I didn’t have any idea regarding the three different types of food and never ate them.
This topic was very useful for me because I am three months pregnant. I have started to eat supplementary food as discussed in training. Now, whenever I prepare food, I make sure that the three categories of food, energy giving foods, bodybuilding foods and protective foods, are included. So I am confident that my newborn baby will be healthy.
In our group we have two meetings every month. One is the Saving Collection and Loan Investment Meeting, and the other, which I feel is very important, is the IBT (Issue Based Training) or Discussion Meeting. Every month, in this IBT or Discussion Meeting, we learn about, share and discuss new topics of interest that can be implemented in our day-to-day lives. I have seen lots of changes in us. In our first IBT meeting we discussed ‘Health and Sanitation’. We had basic knowledge of sanitation and cleanliness before, but after this meeting we knew more. After this meeting I also made changes in myself, my house and my environment.
Before, I had no toilet in my house. I used to use my friend’s toilet or, at night, we had no option but going in the field. Now I have made one at my house and it is very easy for us. I also used to have no idea how and where to manage waste from our house. Since we discussed ‘Sanitation and Cleanliness’, I divide waste into two categories: degradable and non-degradable waste. I have been using degradable waste as a fertilizer for my kitchen garden, while for the non-degradable waste, I collect it in one place and later take it to the waste collection center, where they reuse and recycle it.
Since the meeting, I also focus on my daughter’s cleanliness and teach her to wash her hands before and after eating any food, as well as after using the toilet. Now it is a habit with her.
“Myself, My House and My Surroundings should be Clean and Healthy first, and then our Environment and Community will be Clean and Healthy too.”
On the last of seven days of training, I was so excited because I was going to start my own business the next day. Then I wouldn’t have to do physically demanding work – wow!!! I was so excited. When I received the seed money to start up the business, I was happy on the one hand and on the other hand thinking about how to run my business effectively so that I could earn more money. Even though I had prepared my business plan saying how to get fodder for chicks and where to get chicks, it was still a very thoughtful and challenging moment.
I discussed things with my husband. On the second morning, we started making a pen for the chicks. It took seven days to complete the pen, which my husband helped me make. I went to get chicks and bought 100 in the first batch. With great hope and excitement, I traveled with 100 chicks. When I counted, I found 108 chicks – oh, I got eight chicks as a bonus, how nice! Before going to bed, I went to see how the chicks were doing. I told myself that now my dreams were coming true. I wanted to show my business to Keshav. A week later, Keshav came to my place to make a business visit as discussed during training and home visits.
He was so glad to see my chicks. He said to keep a clean pen and provide clean water for the chicks. He also suggested that I should protect the chicks from the cold. I promised to do that.
After completion of the socio-economic ranking and social situational analysis, the date for seven days of training was finalized. I was so happy to get the chance to be a member of WAWCAS and attend the training because I had never had a chance to participate in any training and this would be my first time. The day before training started, I thought a lot about what training would be like and what I would learn during training. I was asking myself a lot of questions.
Finally, the day came for the training. I got up a bit earlier than my regular time in the morning, completed my household chores and got my daughter ready for school. I was so curious to participate in the training. When I reached the training place, our trainers were already there and a few friends were there too.
We agreed that training would start at 10 am, but not all members had arrived on time. I was nervous and looking for my team members. After half an hour’s delay, training started with a warm welcome by our trainer Keshav. The introduction to the training was so good. The room was full of laughter while we were trying to find our partner from a picture. After finding our own partner, we discussed which types of behavior we like most and which not. It was quite interesting.
The most interesting part was having to introduce my partner, not myself. I had never spoken in front of many people, so I was very scared and nervous. My heart was beating fast, but I managed to give an introduction to my partner. What I liked most in the training were meaningful games and stories which touched my heart. Another very interesting thing was PCA (Pocket Chart Analysis), which was so amazing. I was so impressed when we discussed individual vision, which I never thought when I visualized where I wanted to be after five years. It was quite interesting. I can visualize a lot regarding my business.
During the training period, I could see my confidence growing when I spoke. It was not difficult like on the first day of training. We committed ourselves to being good and successful businesswomen.
I am Dil Maya BK. I am 32 years old. My permanent residence is in the Sarlahi district which is the southern part of Nepal. We came to Kathmandu 10 years ago, with the hope that we will get a good job. I have a daughter that is 5 years old. She is going to School at UKG. My husband is working at a sculpture-making factory.
One day my friend informed me about the WAWCAS program. I was so much excited and thinking a lot. I was so curious to know about the program. I heard that the next day there was a meeting at 11 am. Next day I could not wait, so I went to the meeting place early at 10.30 am. Thank god our trainer Keshav was already there and a few other friends were also there. I was so happy when Keshav informed me about the objective of the program. I was so impressed with him when he said that as long as women are not able to sustain themselves then social and economical development of the society and country is not possible. I was so touched when Keshav said that the core function of the WAWCAS (Women at Work, Children at School) program is to empower and motivate needy and underprivileged women for social change and economic independence through business development and capacity building. I feel that the program is very good and I wanted to be involved in the WAWCAS group as quickly as possible. To me, it is like I was looking for a stone but found God. I wanted to do something but could not get any opportunity. Therefore, I asked when I could start my business and Keshav smiled and replied that it will take 2-3 months period to start the business.
After the meeting Keshav asked for a meeting at my home. I was bit nervous and uncomfortable because I live in a very small room made by CGI sheet, again Keshav reminded me that the program is designed for needy women. Keshav sat on the floor and very comfortably he asked many questions. We discussed openly. I was dreaming to start up my business. Keshav also informed me that my story will be posted on a website. I don’t understand what a website is, but I am happy inside that my dream will come through soon.
Hi, I am Keshav Adhikari. I have been working as a LPL (trainer) in the WAWCAS program since 2011. I started in Lamjung district and since 2018 I am working in Kathmandu in Lalitpur district. I am so glad that I am writing the blog on behalf of Dil Maya showing her ups and downs and experiences for the coming 16 months. For that Dil Maya has already committed to give time for me hence I would like to thank her.