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Family snapshots

Tearfund | 15 May 2018

Indian family

Most parents would like to give their children a better start in life. However, for the 767 million worldwide who live below the international poverty line of $1.90 a day, there are often huge barriers to overcome. They may be tangible, such as lack of food or education, or intangible such as stigma or lack of participation in decision-making.            

These stories show how a small catalyst, such as the availability of training or a micro loan, can inspire an individual to go on to improve the living standards of their whole family and sometimes of the wider community too.

Central African Republic    

Monica and her children

Monica and her children.

Monica was unable to go to school after her father died when she was just six. Unable to read, write, count or manage the money she earned from selling her home-made cakes, she was aware of her disadvantage:         

‘Sometimes, if someone bought something from me, I would give back more change than what I should give,’ she explained, adding that without literacy you are ‘bound to be fooled by people.’  Monica – who was one of the 40% of young women in her country, Central African Republic, who are illiterate – took matters into her own hands by attending Tearfund partner ACATBA’s literacy training.        

‘I’ve been very motivated to attend the school,’ she said, ‘nobody can fool me anymore.’  With her new-found confidence and skills Monica is determined to go on to get qualifications, so that her family continue to benefit: ‘I can’t let my children stay down, I’ll support them, to be educated and get ahead.’


Kushal and family

Kushal and family by their quake-proof home.

Kushal, a Nepali farmer, stands with his family outside the home they are building using earthquake- proof techniques. Before the 2015 earthquake, Kushal had struggled to irrigate his land, his family went short of food as a consequence. His community’s requests to the authorities for a water supply had been unsuccessful.     

After the earthquake, Kushal joined a group set up by Tearfund partner MRC, which provided support and materials to help the community develop water pools and learn organic farming skills.      

‘I’m now able to meet the daily needs of my family,’ says Kushal. ‘Using the water pool we have been able to do our farming on a large scale which has improved our life standard.” But he’s also passing the knowledge he learnt from MRC on to other local people. ‘Before the training we just used to live for ourselves, it was a self-centred life. Now we wish to work for the community.’


Diana and her family

Diana and her family show off their produce.


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