Quarterly Update

Q2 / 2018

In February,
four of “The Widows’ Cause” team travelled to India to visit projects in Chennai and Indore. Time was also spent with the local teams planning for 2018.

We were ‘blown away’ by the positive change we saw in the lives of our 109 widows that TWC impacted last year.   Obviously some are doing better than others but all are very grateful for the opportunity to improve their lives.

Strangely, many Indians would say “there is no poverty in India”. It is true that in cities like Chennai affluent suburbs exist in stark contrast to the slums where our widows live… just a cramped room for sleeping, eating and working with no running water or electricity for the most part. Add the stench of the local fetid river to complete the picture.

In Indore the leper colonies are kept clean but often have no running water or electricity. In the village of Dhar it is hot, dry and dusty. Our widows live in tiny ramshackle huts. There, two wells serving the village communities are rapidly drying up and the available water is polluted.

This is a desperate situation.

Recently the Indian government introduced 18% GST which rocked most of India. Despite the challenges our widows remain DETERMINED and UNSTOPPABLE. They will do whatever it takes to improve their lives through hard work…. we applaud you.

Poornima
is 32 and mother of 2 boys.  Poornima sells sarees at home and in the local market.  Her future is much brighter.
Santhakumari
is 59 and has 1 son.  She has diversified into fish/flour sales and doing very well.
Devi
is 33 and mother to 2 girls.  She runs a tailoring business.  This is providing a steady income.
Rani
is 62 and has 3 children.  Rani expanded her fish stall at the market with her loan and it is thriving.
Dave and Vasugi.     Never a dull moment with Dave.

Hameeda
is 70 and has 2 children and a number of grandchildren.
She sells eggs from home which is providing a regular income. She no longer has to beg on the streets.
Sarali
is 48 and has 1 son and 4 grandchildren.
This widow has a thriving goat business and she couldn’t be happier.
Heera
at 39 is an absolute standout.  She is a natural leader in her community and is a skilled tailoress.  She hopes to diversify into jewellery also.
Durga
is 27 and mother of 2.  She is a field labourer but also raising goats.
In time this will be the primary source of income for this courageous widow and her family.
Gary & Lila.   Little in stature, big in heart.

“The Widows’ Cause honours the widows of Dhar”.
That’s the caption on the plaque of a new 500ft bore well about to be drilled to help the village of Dhar. There are currently 2 wells that quickly dry up in summer.

One is virtually dry now and the other is polluted. Most of the finance will come from repaid loans which the widows are faithfully paying back.

We were shocked at loans being given to widows with repayment
calculated at 10% per month.

However we have topped that. Some of our widows are already trying to do business in the local markets. In the morning they borrow RS.1,000 to purchase stock to resell. In the evening they repay their greedy Loan Shark RS.1,200. That’s 20% per day !!!

What a difference an interest-free loan from “The Widows’ Cause” will make. Where they were making $3 a day they will now be making $7 a day!
What a difference!

TWC are preparing to launch 36 more widows into business in Chennai very soon.

Our local team have also assessed a new area outside of Chennai that has 70 widows in need.

TWC initially will finance a group of 12 widows into business to establish our systems and processes.

THE NEW MADE FOR MORE CAMPAIGN LAUNCHES IN MAY.



IMPORTANT please quote J865N with donations

Don’t forget all donations over $2 are now TAX DEDUCTIBLE…
The Widows’ Cause is a partner for Project  J865N with Global Development Group (ABN 57 102 400 993).  Donation over $2 with a preference for this project are tax deductible.  Excess funds may be applied to other approved activities.  No non-development activities (welfare, political, or evangelism) are a part of, or funded by, the GDG project. For more information please visit the website below.
GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT GROUP  
globaldevelopment.org.au
Visit our website for further information www.thewidowscause.com



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