By Confidente Reporter
PENDUKA Village Trust which established in May 1992 recently held a ‘thank you’ event with its stakeholders with the aim to focus on more opportunities to empower women so that they can improve and make a change in their communities.
Penduka founded by Christien Roos and Martha Muulyau, is one of Namibia’s oldest NGOs and since its establishment 25 years ago it has reached milestones that have been celebrated not only by the organisation but by Namibians from different walks of life.
In a speech read on her behalf at the occasion, Khomas Governor, Laura McLeod-Katjirua said,
“We owe this wonderful moment to the selfless sacrifices of those two dedicated women, Christien Roos and Martha Muulyau the initial founding members of Penduka who planted this important seed we are harvesting today as a succeeding generation.”
The Penduka Village Trust is well known for its artisan women who among other things make beautiful crafts – from embroidered tapestries to repurposed glass beads. The women are also involved in other income generating projects, like a hyper-efficient aquaponics system to grow food for their community. Penduka currently provides basic income and training to over 200 women and two men.
The trust is self-sustaining for salaries and maintenance of its facilities at its base at Penduka Village in Katutura, with revenue derived from the women’s work in hospitality and from their products.
“What is reflected today tells me that an action based on conviction and inner guidance was taken yesterday for us to have these commendable results today,” added Laura McLeod-Katjirua. One of the speakers at the event, US Deputy Chief of Mission, John Kowalski said his embassy had seen it fit to fund Penduka after realising its concept of Namibians developing solutions to improve their community.
“In this sense, Penduka is an example to all Namibian citizens and communities that pursuing ideas can lead to self-sufficiency … that making an idea work takes tenacity and in many cases, teamwork.
“The women of Penduka Trust had the tenacity and built the teamwork. They worked together in pursuit of their dreams. They stuck to their goal and they found ways to help them realise that goal,” said Kowalski.
The event also marked Penduka Trust re-establishing itself as a viable and effective project that will continue to support and empower Namibian women.
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