Walking with Independence – Meet Shakira
Shakira Abenakyo, 21, walks confidently through the dusty pathways of her community selling second-hand clothes. Her journey began in eastern Uganda, where she was married off at 16 years old to a man who already had two children.
As Shakira settled into her new home as a dependent, she had barely enough to survive, some days borrowing money or turning to a sympathetic neighbor to give them food. She lacked the energy and understanding of the benefits of hard work. That is when SBS found Sharkira…
By the end of the first three modules, Shakira realized the need to start up a business. She did not have money, but was determined to start working. Bit by bit, Shakira saved from the little her husband gave her for housekeeping until after three months she had 10,000UGX ($3) in her small savings box. She was passionate about selling baby clothes, so she launched that business. On her first day she earned 50%+ profits! This made her so happy, and today Shakira earns 160,000 UGX ($18) in one month. Her life is transformed. She is so motivated to work hard and has learned to multitask. She starts her work day as early as 5:00 am and ends at 9:00 pm.
“Joining the Street Business school training was the turning point of my life,”she says, “I no longer beg for food or borrow from my neighbors. My daughter’s feeding has also improved, and she no longer sleeps hungry.”
Shakira’s journey has only just begun as she dreams of owning a big boutique and offering employment opportunities to other people. Her number one priority is to educate her daughter, and she dreams of buying land and owning a home. Shakira encourages women like her to stand up and work very hard in order to change their lives.