Go Go Forward is one of several new businesses to emerge from a training project between Zambian partner Mtendere Churches Response Alliance and Tools for Self Reliance. The three women behind it are Eness Tembo, Mary Mbewe and Jessy Banda, who speaks for the group.
Eness and I were both unemployed and living at home, and Mary was scraping by selling vegetables at the local market. Then an opportunity came along that changed our lives.
We enrolled on a tailoring course in our local church, where we learnt how to make different types of clothes including skirts and school uniforms. We learnt how to repair and alter clothes and how to do batik and tie-dye, and we enjoyed everything they threw at us.
We were given sewing machines to help start up our tailoring business and we’re so grateful for these. The training was really important too â€“ we learnt how to use the machines properly and manage our business.
The training has made a big difference. We can send our children to school because we can make the uniforms they need. We’ve built a temporary workshop outside one of our houses. Next year we plan to have a proper workshop, buy more machines and take on more people. Tools for Self Reliance helped us, so we want to help others.
Eness with her sewing machine