I doubt that we may ever know the influence we might have on someone’s life for good, but I know this one thing for sure…influence for good goes beyond that one person into the lives of countless others like a pebble in a pond. I’ve seen it over and over again in the lives of the women we work with. This is Rafiatu’s story! And the 70 women she works with!
As a child she spent many hours in the home of missionaries in northern Ghana. “Mama Brenda” was a positive role model for this young girl and as a board member introduced her to Eternal Threads in 2010.
When we met her, Rafiatu was graduating from the University of Accra where she studied social welfare on scholarship. She wanted to use her degree to help prevent young village women from migrating to the city and being destitute on the streets, as she had seen happen to so many.
While in school she loved making beaded bracelets and gave them away to her friends, but realized that she needed money to pay for her added expenses. Once again, someone invested in her life. A foreign woman gave her money to buy beads and her dream was born!
I knew she was a young woman who would make a difference in the lives of many, so Eternal Threads gave her the first order for her jewelry.
Since that time she has worked beyond exhaustion at times traveling 13 hours on the bus to Accra to buy beads and supplies along with training women in her village to make the jewelry. Eternal Threads provided the funds to register her project – BEADS OF HOPE.
Her commitment and hard work is paying off. She has been interviewed on a radio program called Unique Achievers and was recently chosen out of 2248 applicants to be part of 107 other young people who submitted a business proposal for a government interest free loan. She is continually working to expand her market so she can employ more women.
She has built sheds and huts to be used as workshops and acquired an office/shop space. This year, Eternal Threads is helping Rafiatu with expansion by providing funding for a production unit to make their own recycled beads which will also employ more women.
The entrepreneurial spirit of women who live in poverty never ceases to amaze me. They will make any sacrifice to learn a skill to provide income for their families.
Thank you for your support of Rafiatu by buying her jewelry and the beautiful baskets from her village. Your donations make it possible for us to help her with the expansion of her project. She has made a commitment to others and we are committed to helping her with that vision.
Rather than me thanking you, however, I think I will let Rafiatu’s words speak to you instead.
“The little beads I’m holding and also those on the tree branch are very symbolic because those were the little bracelets I started making as a way to see myself through school and now it has developed into working with 70 women.”
“I need you to be happy and thankful that God is blessing all of us through you.”
Rafiatu, you are a blessing to many and to us. We are thankful that we can partner with you.