News and Updates
January 10, 2020

Sewing Her Way Out of Poverty: Aneesa Kousar’s Story

Ranya Shirbini

After her father passed away, Aneesa’s mother had to carry the burden of bringing up her seven children on her own. With little education and a lack of professional skills her prospects for earning a reasonable living were bleak. She relied on handouts from her family to look after her children which was barely enough to feed them. As she witnessed her mother’s struggle to provide for the family, Aneesa decided she had to do something to improve their lives.

Aneesa found what she thought was a golden opportunity to help lift her family out of poverty. She decided to join the Muslim Hands Vocational Training Centre in Kotli where she learned how to sew and soon flourished. Using a sewing machine gifted to the centre, she became a talented seamstress and began to make clothes for her family and neighbours.

In 2015, at the tender age of 16, Aneesa graduated from the centre fully equipped with all the skills necessary to qualify as a professional tailor and start a home business.

‘It used to break my heart when my younger sisters cried for something or when my mother couldn’t afford treatment for her sickness. Now I am earning enough to survive easily,’ she says. ‘I am blessed that I learned these skills and am living with dignity. Please accept my heartfelt thanks for your support’.

When she isn’t stitching clothes or making Kashmiri dresses, she is planning the expansion of her home business with the goal of opening her own boutique. The sky is the limit for Aneesa now she has the skills and education she needs to thrive. 

Muslim Hands Vocational Training Centres were created with the mission to empower women just like Aneesa. It in incredible to see the positive impact one small gift like a sewing machine can have on someone’s life.

With your support we can help transform the lives of so many more women struggling in poverty. By equipping them with the tools and education they need to develop skills, so they can provide for their families with dignity and respect instead of relying on hand outs to scrape by.

Empower Women To Uplift Themselves and Their Families

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Muslim Hands

Muslim Hands was established in the UK in 1993. Muslim Hands is an international aid agency and NGO working in over 50 countries worldwide to help those affected by natural disasters, conflict and poverty. Muslim Hands Canada is a registered charity with the Canada Revenue Agency (Charity Registration No. 81126 4985 RR0001).