Patmos Women's Tailoring Group
A seminar organised by Headmaster Richard Wanjala Manya and conducted by Bentina Alusi on business skills, book keeping, and accounting was held in the Mathare slum at the Mathare Catholic Hall on 23rd to 25th May 2013. Bentina Alusi is a professional in community development and social work. She has run similar successful seminars in Kibera and Kariobandi slums in Nairobi which train the women to be self reliant.
A total of 23 mothers and guardians of children from the Patmos Junior school, Mathare, together with other vulnerable young women who had been selected from the local community, attended these courses. Most of the mothers were single and unemployed and survive on as little as $1 per day. Those who do manage to find casual work washing clothes for people in nearby estates, earn only a small wage which is barely enough to cover their basic needs.
The main objectives of the seminar in Mathare was to teach the women the necessary business skills to give them the ability and confidence to set up their own small businesses.
The Patmos Women's Tailoring Group is an income generating initiative that was set up in 2014 to help some of the mothers and guardians of children at the school earn a living to support their families.
In 2014 the women initially focused on making the Mwezi reuable sanitary towel, however, over the last few years they have diversified into making school uniforms, bags and baby products such as nappies and baby carriers.
The women now make all the school uniforms for the children at Patmos School.