On the 11th of may 2019, could be considered as one of the community projects that gave me life.
For the first time in my life, it felt like I traded roles with a mother who has a special needs child.
The pains, the grunts, the societal neglect, the economical deprivation, the marital disorder, the financial lack, the motivational drainage, the stigma, the mockery that came from their immediate families and close friends, the shame they face when people look at them as the cause of their children's disability, the struggles to put food on the table, the medical bills that pile up, the worse of all the fear of the unknown that her special child will never be the best version of him or herself. .
The list is endless. .
But what gives me joy and hope is knowing that when there is a NEED, SOLUTIONS are possible to devise.
This project is a joint partnership with the Let Cerebral Palsy Kids Learn Foundation and the Initiative for National Growth Africa to enrich the talent development for children living with Cerebral Palsy through creative art skills and small business development training for mothers of special needs children who need financial literacy to keep improving the social and economic wellbeing of their CP child.
Theme tagged Empowered Mothers, Thriving Children
The parents were privileged to learn from the founder of Mamamoni Nigeria, Nkem Okocha, who runs a Fintech Social Enterprise that is closing the credit gap for low-income female entrepreneurs in rural and urban slum communities in Nigeria through instant Mobile Loans - the mothers learnt the basics of small business bookkeeping, branding, customer service and market research.
The mothers were also motivated by a visually impaired entrepreneur who lost her sight and decided to push further in providing economic empowerment for her family with artistic solutions.
I also had the opportunity to train them on digital skills so they leverage on Social media in order to promote their small business and generate sales.
They had a third sessions on personal finance, budgeting and saving for investment conducted by Echika Obijiakwu.
As the mothers were undergoing these various training, their special needs children were tutored on creative arts such as drawing, painting and jigsaw mathematics to enrich them with social life skills and experiences needed for their physical and mental wellbeing. .
We had the business pitch session where they pitched their businesses and were awarded small grants to scale their startups.
I am happy that these mothers went back home smiling and are able to use the small grants given to them to improve their businesses or startup something meaningful.
Presently, they are undergoing mentorship and capacity development with professionals from both organizations to further enable them invest in themselves and their families.
This is a great pilot phase but I am sure that we will do exceedingly more to put hope were it has been lost and promote the social and economic wellbeing of mothers and their cerebral palsy children.
When a mother is empowered, families are prone not just for economical uplift but for a social change. Follow @ing_spotlight on Instagram and Twitter to get more scoop on this project and more.
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