Threads of Hope: Emily’s Story
In Malawi, there is a faithful and hard-working woman named, Emily Allen. She’s also a single mother taking care of 3 children.
As a single mother, Emily struggled to provide the necessities for her children. Her daughter, Nancy, remembered how often her siblings and herself would go to school with empty stomachs and wonder if there was going to be any food when they got home.
Despite those challenges, she was committed and active at her local church: Chirimba Evangelical Church of Malawi (a partner church of Forgotten Voices).
Help Begins to Arrive
Spotting the urgent need, Emily’s local church began providing her family with basic food items. But, supplying food was a short-term solution and was not sustainable for Emily, her family, or the church.
Emily even voiced some concerns, saying: “I was not so sure about my life and that of my family, sometimes I was a bit ashamed for relying on the church throughout for our provisions” So, a long-term solution needed to happen.
Listening to the local church, Forgotten Voices provided two sustainable solutions:
A small grant for a pig farm
Sponsorship through a sewing skills training course conducted by Tiyamike Sewing Malawi
For the small grant to start a pig farm, Emily received 2 pigs to care for – 1 male and 1 female pig. The pigs were a great blessing to Emily but raising pigs to sell is a task that takes time to provide income. So, another solution needed to happen – the sewing course.
“Though I was a bit nervous at the start of the training, but I knew that was my opportunity to transform my family, and I could not let it go – I persevered to the end.” – Emily
After the nerves swept away, Emily found a powerful rhythm – she could focus on her training, raising her children, and caring for her livestock.
Emily graduated at the top of her sewing class and she even received a free sewing machine to jump-start her new business! She’s been sewing beautiful bags and mending damaged clothes for her neighbors.
But Emily knows, this wasn’t just luck that caused this change, she said:
“I am thankful to God that now I can provide for my family- now we’re able to eat three times a day through the sales I make by supplying to the shop, and the people that come for me to sew them their clothes.”
But it’s not just Emily who has been transformed. Her children and her community are all being transformed as part of this change too!
Her children attend school and know that there will be food waiting for them when they get home. They’ll also be able to attend school without worrying about school fees, uniform costs, or supplies because their mom is providing for their needs through sewing and her pig farm! This increases the children’s chances of completing school and pursuing impactful careers!
What’s next for Emily and her family?
Emily’s small business is changing her community too! Eventually, Emily has a big dream: she wants to grow her sewing business and employ other caregivers to sew and sell their garments!
Lastly, her livestock care has paid off and 4 piglets were recently born!
Isn’t it amazing what your gift can do?
At Forgotten Voices, we are so encouraged by stories like Emily’s! It is remarkable to think of how God uses someone’s God-given gifts to make a change in their family’s life and in their community – sometimes they just need a little help to get started!