HADIJA

from Dar-es-salaam, Tanzania

Hadija's parents always wanted her to complete her education. Unlike most African parents they taught their daughter to live a financially independent life. At 25, Hadija fell in love and got married. Her husband did not like that she worked. 

"It made him feel insecure", Hadija explained, "In African cultures, most boys are taught that they have to be the provider of the family. So, when I worked, it made him feel as if he was not bringing enough to the table. I lied to him that I left my job. Everyday, I would go to work after he left home, and returned in the evening before him. One day he came home early, and found that I had been lying to him. He asked me to stop working and gave me some money. He said to me - if you need money, ask me, I am your husband. You don't need to work."

Hadija used that money to buy a sewing machine, some tools and her first batch of fabric. Since then, she started running a small sewing and weaving business from home. She now has a beautiful and intelligent daughter Sabah, a little shop in Dar-es-salaam city, and, her husband drops her to work everyday. 

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