SEWIN GROUP, ZANZIBAR

The Zanzibar island is changing. The women have always been dependent on their husbands for farm work, domestic needs, food for the children, clothing, everything. They could not have a job or take part in the important family decisions. But now, men and women are helping each other equally to get their income and run their lives, and in some cases, for the first time in history, women are the bread winners.

What happens at Sewin Group is a perfect example, where five Zanzibari women - Salah, Harussi, Halima, Jamila and Moria - meet everyday, for the past five years, and create beautiful handmade dresses using traditional African fabrics - Kanga and Kitenge. "It's more than just a shop", says Harussi, "we are like sisters, we meet everyday, we
talk about our lives and share our problems. It makes me feel very happy and independent. And I can finally earn my own money."

Moria, who travels every week to Dar-es-salaam city to buy fabric for the shop says, "It is important to empower women, because here in Zanzibar women are responsible for their families. Men sometimes have 3-4 wives, so they may neglect one family. But when the women start to earn their own money and make their own decisions, they can help better their family's future."

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© 2019  by  The Colour Bug, Newcastle, Australia