Kgotso is a single mother, living in an informal settlement with her two children and younger sister who struggles with a mental disability. Kgotso is also a survivor of gender-based violence. She joined our Ikemele program in January 2021, attending counselling, support group sessions and skills training classes.
"When I first joined Lesedi's programs, never in a million years did I think I would achieve my dreams. I felt like I was stranded and alone, and depended a lot on my partner who was very abusive. I soon realised I wasn't alone and that other women are going through similar struggles. Lesedi la Batho didn't only give me support to recover from my abuse, but also relieved my family with food parcels while I got on my feet."
Upon graduating from the Ikemele program, Kgotso presented a small business plan to Lesedi la Batho, with the idea of starting a vegetable garden on our centre property. The produce would be sold in the community to support her family. We agreed to host the project and seed funded the first supplies she needed. Kgotso then invited other women from our programs to work with her - feeling that she had an opportunity to empower other women to regain their independence.
Six months later, the project is thriving and producing a lot of vegetables. The co-operative has started selling the vegetables and seeing the fruits of their labour!
"I will always be grateful to Lesedi la Batho for their continued support in my life and the lives of many women and children in our community."
Please consider helping more women like Kgotso in Mabopane. The Ikemele program empowers survivors of gender-based violence to rise above their trauma and become financially independent - but it is solely reliant on donations from individuals. Give towards the Ikemele program this Christmas season to enable a woman to join our program in January 2022!