Evodia Patrice and Edigar Berege
With 5 children to raise, water to fetch, and food to cook, Evodia had little time to make money to provide financial support for her family. Though her responsibilities were critical to her family’s wellbeing, this is considered a mere duty in Tanzania, a job with little appreciation. Evodia’s husband, Edigar, was a primary school teacher in the local village previously, then began to manage their small farm making $180 per year. Even though his small income sustained the family to live in poverty, he still claimed the position of breadwinner in the household, as is the case in most households in Tanzania. Financial support far outweighs any other care or support for the family, leaving women disadvantaged to make decisions within the household, and forces them to fully depend on their husbands to buy everything, from laundry soap to the food they eat - as was the case for Evodia. Until this cultural dogma shifts, it is critical that women have opportunities to participate in money-making activities.
With the little time Evodia had, she sold crops from their small farm and saved for months. With support from her husband, she bought a MoneyMaker Max pump in July 2013 with hopes of a better life for herself, her husband, and her children. In less than a year, Edigar and Evodia’s bucket irrigated one acre farm quickly turned into a two acre plot. Previously, they would harvest their small farm once a year, struggling to live off of the $180 they earned from it. Now, working together with the pump, they harvest twice per year, earning $300 each harvest. This year, they have a projected income of $600 - almost a 250% increase.
A year ago, the life Evodia lives now was nothing but a far-away dream. Women in Tanzania have an uphill battle to gain respect and equality amongst their male counterparts, but Evodia is a woman that is braving the battle. Women in Evodia’s village are seeing her success, her standing in the household rise, and most importantly, see the possibilities. Edigar and Evodia are now sending their children to a private boarding school to give them a better education from the government school they were attending before. With the extra money, they are investing in other businesses, currently planning to build a larger house close to the boarding school to use as a hostel for students.
This is only the beginning for Evodia and Edigar. Evodia shared that she is so thankful for the pump. It has given her a voice for the first time in her marriage, where he listens to her opinions and family decisions are made together. She is one woman making a change for herself and for women in her community, because she knew there was a better way.
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