Abducted Ugandan Women are Liberated by Literacy and Business
Interweave, Engage Now Africa & THRIVEGulu are working together to impact the lives of vulnerable women.
In 1994 Jennifer Amony was 14 when rebel soldiers shot her parents and dragged her from her home in Gulu, Uganda. For six years she was brutalized by soldiers as a slave of General Kony’s infamous “Lord’s Resistance Army” in northern Uganda. At the end of hostilities in 2002, she was released from abduction. She is now as a single mother of three with no schooling or work skills.
“I was the mother and the father of my children, and we had nothing.”
With intense struggle, she gradually learned how to read and to sew. With this small foundation in 2012 she joined with other single mothers also traumatized by the war. Through an organization known as THRIVEGulu they formed a simple cooperative tailoring business to feed their children. With literacy and sewing skills, she and a few of her friends had started their path to self-reliance.
In 2015 Thrive Gulu set a goal to reach at least 1,000 women in northern Uganda like Jennifer who were also victims of the war. Interweave Solutions has since partnered with Engage Now Africa and THRIVEGulu to develop a comprehensive literacy and business program.
This three-year journey from illiteracy to self-reliance is based on Interweave’s tested materials and training. Women are gathering together to form self-reliance groups. Promising peer leaders – women who have already moved from abduction to self-reliance – have volunteered to organize and facilitate these self-reliance groups.
Interweave director Lynn Curtis, Cecilia Amankwah – Engage Now Africa Literacy Director, and THRIVEGulu’s leadership team trained Gulu volunteer leaders, including Jennifer Amony, to reach more than 1,000 of their neighbors and friends. They are using their new Acoli language literacy manual, “Ryemo Can” (“Fighting Poverty”) to move from Acoli to beginning English literacy. Participants then learn from Interweave’s English literacy primers “The ABC’s of Business” and “English for Business Success!” which teaches business basics while also learning English. Finally participants will advance to Interweave’s full business program, “Success in Business.”
Jennifer concludes, “I am happy to help with literacy, and I can see that I will also learn how to improve my tailoring business.”
Through Interweave, volunteers like Jennifer, who were beginning learners are now becoming leaders, and preparing to move hundreds of families in northern Uganda from poverty to prosperity through village self-reliance groups.
End of year Summary for the work done since April – December 2016 and 2017 plans
INTERWEAVE SOLUTIONS – SOUTH WESTERN UGANDAGroups Formed and Number of People mentored in each group
Group Name: Burambira Tukwatanise Group
Group Name: Rushebeya Soul Winner group
Group Name: Nyanja Kwetungura Group
Group Name: Kamuronko Tukorehamwe Group
Group Name: Christ the King women Group (MBS 1)
Group Name: Kizinga Interweave Group
Group Name: Ahamurambi Abetereine Group A
Group Name:Ahamurambi Abetereine Group B
Group Name: Ahamurambi Abetereine Group C
Group Name: Ahamurambi Abetereine Group D
Group Name: MBS Class 2