Author: Foday Sesay, Nurturing Opportunities for Women Supervisor
Kadie Sannoh is a petty trader, farmer, and a mother of five children in the community of Yandohun. In 2017, she joined the Nurturing Opportunities for Women (NOW) program.
Before joining the NOW program, she was not confident in managing her household resources. At times, she would work for the whole year on her farm and later realize that they had yielded no profit. Lacking business skills, she and her husband Lansana, did not value their resources and often just gave them away to people. They felt they were unable to plan ahead and often took loans in advance of harvesting their products, which reduced their income for the rest of the year. Kadie stated, “All of these things have dwindled the family growth: our children dropped out of school, we had poor medical care, no proper and nutritious meals for the family, and we were backward from any development in the community.” Kadie did not know how to change her situation, stating,
“We thought that this was just what God has chosen for us. Not until my involvement in the NOW program things dramatically changed for us.”
Both of them developed great interest in the NOW program because they were illiterate and wanted to learn something that would bring a total reversal to their life for the better. Kadie’s husband attended all the family sessions, where husbands are invited to share in the learning of their wives. When he attended the savings and budget session, he was moved as this was a skill they had never been able to foster before. They started planning their savings together, “There things started moving in the right direction for us. We began to understand ourselves and respect each other’s views and even our children.”
Kadie’s husband decided they would share the household income in a manner that would yield good rewards for the family. Previously, Lansana had controlled everything, including all of the household money and farming. Little by little they began to share more with each other, and now Kadie also includes Lansana in the core issues in the household. This has been productive for their family, with the whole family receiving greater community recognition. With Lansana being an active member of the Community Action Group (locally trained volunteers who lead development initiatives in the community), and Kadie a NOW Participant, they are both actively contributing to the development of the Yandohun community.