Puja Rai (age 23), an inhabitant of Sundarharaicha Morang, is involved in tailoring occupation. A mother of a five-year-old, Puja earns from her tailoring shop. Since her adolescence, Puja believed on the importance of being self-reliant. Being motivated by that vey notion, she used to make dolls and sell them. She was married at the age of eighteen. After being married also, she has aspiration to be self-reliant. However, she did not have higher education or skills to pursue her career. One day while she was listening to FM Radio in her mobile phone set, she heard announcement regarding the submission of application for Tailoring Level 1 training which was said to be free of cost. After being acquitted with the details of the training, she applied for it and got selected. She attended the 65 days long training which was conducted through Jeev Career Institute Private Limited under SAMRIDDHI Project of Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies (MoICS) with the funding of International Fund of Agriculture Development (IFAD) and technical support of Helvetas Nepal. She regularly learnt all skills that were delivered during the training period which spanned from May 2019 to August 2019.
She wished to start her own enterprise following the completion of the training. Nevertheless, she did not have enough capital to start her own venture. When she came to know that her co-trainee Sharmila Gurung had also similar problem, they decided to establish a tailoring shop in partnership. So that the burden of managing capital can be shared. Both of them jointly took loan of NRs. 60,000 from a local cooperative and opened a tailoring shop at their village. With the money they received as loan, they bought three second hand sewing machines, two interlock machines and a rack. Though they opened the tailoring shop in their own village with great zeal and enthusiasm, the number of customers did not raise even after months. Then, they shifted their shop to the urban area of Sundarharaicha municipality. With such shift, the numbers of customers also increased significantly.
Echoing contentment in her tone, she says, “We are satisfied with the profit that we are making now. We have been able to pay the loan of the cooperative within 8 months.” Both of them separately earn around NRs. 16,000 per month. While sharing about future plan, Puja says, “We are planning to learn additional skills by giving a turn to each other. Thereby, one of us will be there to keep the shop open when one of us will be acquiring further skills. After both of us will be equipped with additional skills, we will expand our work further”. The confidence and joy derived from the success of her business is well reflected on Puja’s face. Elucidating her joy of being self-employed, she states, “I received the training when I was desperate to acquire skills for earning. Because of the training that I received from SAMRIDDHI, I have become able to support my family in financial affairs. This fact really makes me feel proud. Now, I save minimum NRs. 100 per day from my daily income. I am thankful for providing me such a golden opportunity”.