Naw Htoo Nay Paw

The following is a letter from Naw Htoo Nay Paw.

My name is Naw Htoo Nay Paw and now I am 23 years old. My native village is Tha Bye Kyine Village, Ayeyarweddy Division which was affected by Cyclone Nargis in 2008, May. I have 3 siblings, and during Cyclone Nargis I lost my youngest brother. My parents were daily wagers and they could not afford me to attend grade four. My father died when I was 13 years old. After Cyclone Nargis, my mother married a young man, and I had decided to leave my family and went to Zoe Center by the support of Thramu Daily Paw, assistant Secretary of Yangon Kayin Baptist Women association. In 2008 June, I became a supporting catering staff for the trainees at Zoe Center.

From 2008 to 2014, I have attended different kinds of training such as teenage girl training, women development training, basic sewing class, embroidery training, making fancy training, sewing hymn book cover, cloth purse and door mat training.

In 2014, we have organized a micro finance group with some staff and called Esther Family Group. We have 7 members and we work as a team and share benefit to the members when we get profit from our team work. We received 300000 kyats from Friends of Burma and started from 300000 kyats and try to find out ways to extend our products and also for our markets. For our group we don’t save the money monthly but whenever we gain income from the products we save to our group fund by ratio of income.

With Esther Family Group

Now our group members are making ribbon flowers brooch, sewing Karen lady blouse, table cloth, pillowcase, doormat, cloth purse and hymn book cover. Some members make traditional or herbal medicine, soap liquid, making embroidery by using hand, sewing machine and also computer. Sometimes we make snacks by ourselves and sometimes we buy from markets and sell it to customers. We do it whenever we have order from our customers but for some products we sell it at Fun Fetes, annual mass meetings and whenever we have activities at Franc Auditorium. As our women association has a store and canteen, we can sell our products there.

As I have responsibility for catering to trainees at Zoe center for 5 years, now I know how to manage the catering service. Although I did not finish the primary school, I can now work together with our group members and gain regular income. I could save money for myself, and I can even send pocket money to my mother. Through the experiences of working with group, it is so empowered for me to have learned team spirit and also gain confidence in whatever I do and it makes me have clear vision and realistic purpose for my future plans. I’m really grateful to Friends of Burma for initial capital for our group activities. Without this initial support it will be very difficult to start our group work. From this initial amount we can extend our work and I’m sure that it not only supports us financially but also empowers us to be a strong capable women with full confidence in our lives.

With a lot of thanks,
Naw Htoo Nay Paw

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