Poverty is made up of many faces worldwide, it is a well-known fact that majority of the poor are women and in a country like Pakistan societal disadvantages and inequality shape the experience of poverty differently to that of men. Women are more vulnerable and face challenges that make it very difficult for them to climb out of the poverty trap.
Pakistan is a country of 220 million people, a country that has suffered due to various issues leaving Pakistan trailing with poverty levels of over 39%. The country and women, in particular, are suffering from poverty of opportunities which means they will never be able to escape the poverty trap and will resort to begging, crime and selling their bodies in order to support their children.
A study conducted in Pakistan found that poverty and the lack of empowerment were associated with criminal activities of women. Most women who committed drug-related offences, theft and prostitution were from economically disadvantaged backgrounds and became involved in such activities in order to make ends meet. As most of the women were divorced, separated, widowed or single, the financial burden fell on them. Many women also become victims of human trafficking, the most common form of which is prostitution as a means of survival and economic deprivation. Low levels of living conditions can often compel children to abandon school to contribute to the family income, putting them at risk of being exploited
What we are doing:
Forgotten Women encourage women to explore their ability and passion to succeed in their chosen business so they can earn with their own hands which in-turn will make them into successful businesswomen overnight so they do not have to turn to beg or prostitution in order to support their family.
‘Poverty is the inability of having choices and opportunities, a violation of human dignity. It means lack of basic capacity to participate effectively in society.’ United Nations
A simple personalised approach is implemented, every woman has a different skillset and passion, this is why it is important and part of a successful project construct that the team sit with each woman and let her draw up her own business plan. We evaluate and cost the business and create a profit forecast. If everyone is happy, we will then give training on how to handle that particular business and then accompany each woman to buy her business components. The nature of businesses for women in Pakistan range from beauty salons, women’s café, shoemaking, and even tailoring.
Please do support these women and give them the opportunity they have seeking for a lifetime, every woman deserves that.