Living Positive Mlolongo
Thanks to a proposal shared by IVHQer Philippine Geelhand, IVHQ is proud to announce that Living Positive Mlolongo (LPM) in Kenya has been awarded an IVHQ Booster Grant.
LPM is a Women’s Education placement supported by IVHQ volunteers in Kenya. LPM supports vulnerable children and people living with or affected by HIV/AIDS, providing them with access to education and training, information sharing, counselling, care and support.
One of the support programs offered by LPM is the Women’s Economic Empowerment Program (WEEP), which strives to provide skills and small business establishment training to support women living with HIV or AIDS to achieve economic independence.
At WEEP, women participate in a 12-month course free of charge. The women are trained in income-generating skills such as bead making, dressmaking and tailoring. After graduating from the WEEP program, LPM provides each woman with a sewing machine and a small micro-loan to start their business. This helps women to empower themselves and generate an income to provide for their families in a stable environment.
With the aim of reaching self sustainability, WEEP graduates are able to stay on following their course and join the production team, which uses the machines at LPM to produce goods which can be sold onsite at the small shop, or made to order. These items include bags, clothing and school uniforms.
Prior to receiving the Booster Grant from IVHQ, the machines used at LPM consisted of one straight power-driven machine, 10 manual hand-driven machines, one manual over-lock, and one manual knitting machine. With the support of an IVHQ Booster Grant totalling US$2678.65, LPM have been able to purchase:
- 2 x powered straight sewing machines
- 2 x powered knitting machines
- 1 x over-lock machine
- 5 x stools to go with the machines
- Start-up materials for making school uniforms.
The materials purchased will act as start-up materials which will be re-stocked after products are sold and will drive WEEP in the direction of self-sustainability.
The added bonus of the IVHQ Booster Grant is that initially the WEEP program was able to accept 12 women per year to participate on the course. Now with the new machines, the number of women that WEEP is able to train can be increased to 16 women and more women will be able to stay on and work on the production of goods.
In the past, the production unit has been hampered by lack of quality equipments, which has resulted in lost orders for the group that would have otherwise benefited their livelihood.
The team at LPM and the women at WEEP are happy with their new machines and know that these machines will ensure that their production unit will now perform more efficiently, which will in turn allow more women to benefit for the program.
If you’re interested in supporting Women’s Education in Kenya, learn more about our volunteer opportunities in Kenya.
To find out more about the IVHQ Booster Grants or to submit a proposal, visit the Booster Grants page.