Democratic Republic of the Congo. Success Ambassadors in the Congo have been working hard and the fruits have finally been harvested! Here was a graduation of a group sponsored by the Canadian University of the Congo. There are two more groups preparing to graduate in the coming months and a new “Center for Autonomy and MBS Services,” which they created as part of the course in order to help spread the program to the community.
Ecuador. Dean Curtis, co-founder of Interweave Solutions recently traveled to South America to celebrate two exciting MBS Graduations in Ecuador and Colombia. Over 50 people in these two countries received their MBS Certifications! Our Success Ambassadors have been working hard to facilitate the progress of these participants along the road to self-sufficiency.
Guyana. The MBS program focuses on 3 areas in which we can improve: business, home, and community. Interweave Guyana recently partnered with the local police station and a local church to participate in a service project to improve street conditions and erect some new road signs. As an organization that strives to strengthen people in groups, we’ve seen that service projects like this serve to both strengthen the community and build bridges between different organizations, allowing us to work together for good.More
Berbice, Guyana. In 2014, Interweave Solutions partnered with The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints to provide business training to its members all over Guyana. A year later and after measurable success, Dr. Lynn Curtis and two Success Ambassadors presented the program to the First Lady of Guyana, who proceeded to make it a key part of her office’s agenda. Since then, Interweave’s Master of Business in the Streets program has grown and thrived throughout the country.
Sanjay Pooran is one of the original Success Ambassadors in Guyana who played a critical role in developing the program and gaining sponsorship from both the church and the government. Since 2014, he has facilitated over 20 workshops and trained about 1000 people across the country. Sanjay affirms that working with Interweave has positively impacted his life in many ways. “It has been a tremendously positive and transformative exercise for me. I have learned to work with people, build partnerships, and help make change in communities across my country.” As he’s worked hard to help his family, friends, and others become self-reliant, he has gained for himself an “appreciation for the personal struggles and challenges of others.” He says “I have found great strength by witnessing the resilience, strength, and character of men and women who, despite all odds, are willing to learn, grow and succeed. This has been, perhaps, the most important opportunity I get at every training I conduct.”
In the four years that Interweave has been active in Guyana, over 1600 people have improved their lives by learning and applying the principles taught in the MBS program. The inspiring transformations Sanjay is privileged to witness include abused women finding power and confidence to confront their offenders or walk out of relationships, illiterate adults humbling themselves enough to seek help from their children in learning to read, and determined women turning a fleeting idea into a thriving dried fish exporting company. Sanjay comments “The creativity, imagination, drive, and power of these folks is inspirational. I often wonder if we were to harness the potential of the people of our country, we would be beyond wealthy. But we are getting there… Interweave Solutions is making its mark and showing what Guyana can do when it is self-reliant.”
Ecuador. May Rodriguez became a Success Ambassador and brought along her 9 year-old daughter, Ghia, to all the classes she taught. After watching three different groups graduate, Ghia decided that she too wanted to take the class and start her own business. She is currently participating in her mom’s MBS class and completing all the requirements. She has started her business making and selling pillows and small stuffed animals.
Honduras. We want to recognize and give a special thanks to this group of students from the Technological Institute of Business Administration in Choluteca. They form part of an MBS group led by Success Ambassador Jonathan Rodriguez. The group is sponsored by a deputy in the National Congress of Honduras. These young entrepreneurs demonstrate that with big dreams and support from both Interweave and local government leaders, there are no boundaries or limitations. Thanks for your great work!
Bolivia. Before she began the MBS program, Lydia Aguilar was trying to make a small business out of making and selling leather jackets to her neighbors, but ultimately she had no idea how to run a business. Now that she has taken and graduated from the MBS course, she organizes her successfully growing business well.
Now that her business is well-established, Lydia has more time and resources allowing her to help with a community project called “Angel Dresses.” She receives fabric from donated wedding dresses and turns it into white dresses for small children who have passed away in underprivileged families. Her work fulfills Interweave’s dream by making a positive difference in her own life and in her community.
Ecuador. Maria Elena had always loved making desserts but because she never had experience she threw out more damaged dough than she baked. Then suddenly one day, the bread she was making turned out so well that her neighbors asked her if she sold it. She knew it was not a coincidence that in her next MBS class, they discussed the 6Ps of business. That very night, she set a price and determined to sell her product to the neighbors.
As Maria Elena has applied the business principles she has learned in the MBS program, and with the support of her Success Ambassador she has been able to rise above her competition, grow her business and improve the lives of her clients with new and unique products and services. Today she runs a successful bakery called Dulce Inspiración and sells all kinds of breads and desserts.
Her Success Ambassador says “She wrote me many times saying she was about to give up because she didn’t have support. I reminded her what her dream had been and that it was already being fulfilled… When she started the MBS program, she didn’t have a lot of self-confidence. We encouraged her and told her that through her talents she could realize her dream.”
We are excited about the progress of Maria’s bakery and are confident it will continue its growth as she continues to apply the principles learned in the MBS program!
Uganda. ENGAGE NOW AFRICA! THRIVEGULU AND INTERWEAVE IN UGANDA
Co-founder of Interweave, Lynn Curtis, recently went on a trip of a lifetime to Uganda.
There were so many amazing things that happened during the trip, but here are some of the highlights.
- Board Member, Ruth Vidaurre, accompanied him on the trip.
- THRIVEGulu celebrated its third year in the self-reliance program. The Interweave-THRIVEGulu partnerships has brought about many great assets for the wonderful people- an Acoli and English literacy manual, ABCs for Business and English for Business Success, and with this most recent trip, English Success In Business! with the same outcomes as the MBS program.
- Partnering with Engage Now Africa!, THRIVEGulu was able to build a Center (see picture above) in order to facilitate training meetings or other group gatherings. The building is new! So new, in fact, that the Interweave training with this group was the first event to occur in the building!
- In reality, people with very to no little English skills are now able to communicate fluently and teach in English, and better contribute to their local economy because of the skills that they are learning and using.
- THRIVEGulu also met with Lynn Curtis in order to discuss a Youth Group, using similar materials to the ones we have previously collaborated on with them. These “youth” are from 16 years old to their early 20’s, and the youth group met together to talk about distinctive issues for their age group. Their challenges are many, none are proficient in English, half of the group consists of single mothers with children, and they are school dropouts. We and our wonderful partners at THRIVEGulu are collaborating to help these youth change the course of their lives. We want to provide them with literacy/business education options.
Overall, it was a successful and life-changing trip. We are ever thankful for the support of our friends at Engage Now Africa! and THRIVEGulu for their hard work and desire to change the world. We will continue collaborating with them and help empower people in need across the world with literacy and business skills!
Uganda. 10–Year Partnership. Since 2008, Interweave has partnered with Engage Now Africa to end poverty. We worked with them in previous years in the greater Accra area to advance self-reliance for hundreds of unemployed families. Participants excelled at micro-businesses while also improving their homes and communities.
Today, Interweave continues to work with Engage Now Africa, collaborating with THRIVEGulu to move women who are recovering from previous abduction to a higher level of self-confidence and self-reliance in northern Uganda.
Cameroon. A NEW SUCCESS AMBASSADOR IN CAMEROON
It’s always exciting to see progress internationally. We continue to see other individuals around the world work hard to become Success Ambassadors for Interweave Solutions.
One of these individuals, Francky L. Ntyam Adjomo, is from Cameroon. He received his MBS certificate a couple years ago, but recently decided he wanted to become a Success Ambassador for Interweave Solutions.
He worked hard, and it paid off! His business plans were flawless and he successfully received his certificate to start his journey as a Success Ambassador.
Benin. In July of 2017, Mr. Kazotti Ifonti of Benin, Africa traveled to Ghana where he met our current Success Ambassador, Saida Zouzou. Mr. Kazotti learned about the Interweave Solutions MBS program and was immediately interested in bringing the program back to his home country. Back in Benin, he began the MBS program online. He began to invite other people from his personal network. Briac Afangnon and Isidore Odountan also began the MBS course online. The men all graduated successfully from the MBS program and went on to each receive their Success Ambassador Certificate.
Today, Mr. Kazotti, Mr. Agangnon, and Mr. Odountan have established their own legal NGO, Interweave Solutions Benin. Not only are they are mentoring participants from Kenya through our online system, they each have their own self-reliance group of participants who are working towards their MBS certification.
Their other current projects include creating a proposal for their meeting with the First Lady of Benin, partnering with LDS Charities West Africa, and translating all of our manuals and online materials into a more native French.
They are each amazing men who caught the Interweave Vision and are on their way to great success. We are very grateful for their hard work and tireless efforts to improve.
Along with their hard work, they are also facing a problem. Interweave Solutions Benin wants to offer the program to clients who are properly prepared with skill training and great potential. However, some of the single mothers and other vulnerable members of their clientele in the area have great business ideas and desire to receive the self-reliance training but do not have the means to pay for the MBS course. They are looking for scholarships for these clients so that they will be able to receive the life-changing MBS self-reliance training.
If you are interested in helping the Interweave Solutions Benin project, please make a donation today! Anywhere from a $25 donation could not only change somebody’s life but also help them reach their true potential. Those who receive financial aid will be pre-qualified individuals who have proven themselves to be worthy qualifiers of the scholarship.
If you at this time cannot make a donation, we ask that you please share this story on social media so that we can fulfill our mission providing self-reliance and business training for those in need. The more people that know about the campaign and donate, the more people that can become MBS graduates and Success Ambassadors around the world, thus eradicating poverty around the world.
Mexico. We recently have had sixteen new ambassadors join our team! They are from México and we are so excited to have them as a part of our team.
They each had to pass through an interview process to verify that they were serious candidates and ready to help spread the Interweave vision. They had a special graduation ceremony in which co-founder, Dean Curtis and Latin American program director, Diego Lizano gave the certificates. The celebration was beautiful and the new ambassadors are already forming groups and making a difference in the world of Interweave already.
From CDMX: Alvaro Tiburcio, Katia Ramos, Salvador Calvo, Nestor Cruz, Frida Calvo, Lizbeth Bravo, Francisco Meraz Zabala
From Ciudad Juárez: Nohemi Salazar, Alejandro Ayala, Erika Garay.
From Guadalajara: Hilda Marquez, Edgar Alejandro Gutierrez, Alma Gómez, David Perez Gomez, Guillermo Raylander Navarrete, Blanca Estela Gutiérrez R.