Sewing Afghan Lives Back Together

Tailoring class
Tailoring class
USAID's ACAP II
Grieving families are helped to provide for themselves after death of the breadwinner
13 JUNE 2013 | GHAZNI, AFGHANISTAN
 
When Narindar Singh was killed in a road accident in Ghazni in eastern Afghanistan his grieving family was faced with the biggest question that comes with the death of the breadwinner. Who would provide now that Singh, a hard-working mason and the family’s mainstay, was dead? That’s when the Afghan Civilian Assistance Program offered to help. From 2007, the Program has helped 12,000 families who have suffered losses because of the presence of U.S. and coalition military forces in Afghanistan.
 
The accident that killed Singh involved a U.S. Army armored vehicle. So the Program offered five of Singh’s female relatives help with setting up a tailor’s business. The Program paid for three months of instruction, all the equipment and materials needed, including sewing machines and fabric.
 
Singh’s family got off to a great start. Even as they trained, they received an order for 60 dresses. Today, the business is thriving, with profits of as much as $180 a month.
 
“We receive at least two orders a day,” says Singh’s daughter Kaltar Kow, adding that the demand is in line with the quality of the garments they produce, “We learned how to sew good-quality clothes,” she says. “We feel that soon we will be able to attract even more customers by sewing and selling clothes at the bazaar.  We will invest in our business and hope to make it stronger.

Last updated: January 08, 2014

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