Women in Lombok: Equality

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Gender equality and women’s rights are written in capital letters in Indonesia, at least in the constitution. In reality however, the situation is often different. Women continue to be disadvantaged, and socially and structurally discriminated against. This is noticeable in many areas of life. In some cases, women are married as children, single mothers have no access to state benefits because they are not recognized as the head of the family, and most families in financial distress choose to send their son to school rather than their daughter.

Together with our Indonesian partner organization Gema Alam, we are working tohelp women to become more economically independent and to gain more recognition and acceptance in society.

One of these credit borrowers is Misriah. After the 2018 earthquake in Lombok, Misriah’s husband took out a loan to rebuild destroyed houses in Lombok. As aprimary school teacher, he did not earn enough to repay the loan while feeding his family of four, and Misriha opened her own warung, a small four-wheeled street stall. She took the opportunity to support her husband and has been selling snacks and other groceries in the village ever since. The GMI micro-credit of 125 euros helped her increase her range and household income.

Farmi also supports her family by selling snacks and crackers called Kerupuk. Shehas been working for two years to improve her business on a continuous basis. Farmi now earns almost as much as her husband and has almost doubled the family income. With the help of a 63-euro-microloan, she now wants to expand her market to neighboring villages and may soon earn more than her husband.

Like the other two women, Sumianti comes from the east of Lombok. Five yearsago, Sumianti decided to start her own business, on which she continues to workconfidently and actively. By selling clothes and underwear, Sumianti was able toraise the family’s income, according to her own statemets, and our €190 microloan is helping her respond to ever-changing demand and expand her range.

GMI and Gema Alam are also supporting other women on their way to independence. In fact, the 39-year-old Wardah’s business idea is so successful that her husband gave up his job as a motorbike taxi driver to support his wife. After attending a training course specially designed to train women to processfood, Wardah seized the opportunity and started her own business – selling Kerupuk (crackers). What began with a starting capital of 30 euros and a brilliant business idea has now developed into a family business, in which husband and children help. Our 125 Euro-microloan helped the family to increase the production volume and to secure the main income of the family.

All these women gained an equal role in the family and their village community through their own initiative and devotion. Sumianti and Wardah could become thefamily’s main earners through their business ideas with our help.

Would you like to help women in Lombok to build their own small business and become more independent? Support our work with a donation (purpose: women’s Lombok) – our promise: Afterwards you will find out exactly who you have helped!