The members of Kapendwe Carpentry group used to rely on the income from their small family farms to survive. Constantly under the threat of a poor harvest or crop failure, their livelihoods were extremely insecure. When they heard about the skills training programme run by our partner Community Youth Mobilisation, the young men knew that this was an opportunity to transform their lives.
After taking part in a two week training programme, the participants were encouraged to join together to form small enterprises, and Kapendwe Carpentry was born.
The group is now able to build tables, benches, doors, stools and other wooden items, and can set prices according to the cost of materials and labour to ensure they receive a fair profit for their work. A group agreement means that each of the members feels secure in the knowledge that if he is ill, his co-workers will support him. Kapendwe Carpentry are now optimistic about their future, and plan to develop their skills further in response to the local demand for products.
Group member John Munshya feels a true sense of pride in his own abilities:
I’m capable now. Since the training I know all of the tools, I’m a full carpenter.