Hand in Hand – we are know supporting the village of Molia in Kenya.
After supporting the village of Kharpa in India for about 3 years, we are now supporting a new project, the village of Molia 150 km south of Nairobi in Kenya. We see this sponsorship as very important, and close to our hearts, as it affects the structure and development of the entire village. It will be extremely exciting and enriching to see how this project develops. The Hand in Hand village programme creates the conditions for lasting development.
Today, many people in the world live in poverty and lack basic needs such as food, housing, access to health care or basic education. Poverty, however, is about much more than just a lack of money. It can be about surviving on very small margins and not being able to afford to send your children to school or seek medical care when you are ill, and not having any influence on your own life and future. This is where Hand in Hand’s work helps people to improve their living conditions themselves – by their own efforts but with Hand in Hand’s help.
Hand in Hand is convinced that entrepreneurship is the way out of poverty. For every trained entrepreneur who starts a business and increases their income, this usually means that the entrepreneur’s entire family will have better living conditions. In this way, our efforts raise whole families out of poverty with better prospects for their children.
Women play a key role in development work because they have an important social and economic impact on both the family and society. Training and empowering women are the keys to fighting poverty. Studies show that women generally invest 90 % of their income in family well-being, while the corresponding figure for men is 30–40 %.
As Hand in Hand focuses on women, its work has a direct impact on women’s ability to support themselves and their families. When women receive an income, it helps them to have a stronger and more equal role in the family as well as in society. Increased equality is a prerequisite for a fairer society, as women in poor countries live more vulnerable lives than men.
The first step in Hand in Hand’s model is to mobilise vulnerable people in self-help groups of about 20 members, where they receive training in group dynamics and financial discipline. Together, they start to save collectively and develop an important social community where they work toward common goals.
A higher income leads to better health because health care and medicine become affordable. This results in better diet and hygiene both of which have a direct impact on people’s health..
Members of the self-help groups immediately start saving small amounts – both individually and collectively. If someone needs to take out a loan beyond the group’s own savings, and has completed the training, we will link them with serious institutions that provide microloans. These loans may only be used for investments in their business activities.
Most of the people we target with our activities live in rural areas and are heavily dependent on agriculture. This means they are often the hardest to be hit by climate change. We therefore focus a great deal on creating climate smart companies and sustainable livelihoods.
If families are starving, many parents have no choice – the children must work to support the family. Sometimes the children are even sold as slaves to employers. Poverty is the root of child labour. Hand in Hand aims to combat poverty and thus eliminate child labour.
In India, Hand in Hand’s operations have mobilised more than 330,000 children in schools. As the family’s livelihood improves, many children can leave work and go to school. Children who are not forced to work will have both a proper childhood and schooling, which will also have a positive impact on future generations.
Schooling is a right for all children. The more children we are able to move from work to school, the more we can contribute to a better future for these children and to eradicating poverty in the long term.
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