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Many women have got the chance of attaining self-reliance together with employing their near and dear ones in income- generating activities through operating boutique houses in Rajshahi city and its outskirts, reports BSS.
Talking to BSS, some of them termed the venture as an effective means of women empowerment and social contribution. Amena Begum, owner of Maisha Boutique and Fashion House at Upashahar Koyerdara in the city, narrated her success story.
She supplies goods of order to different parts of the country successfully. More than 100 women coming from underprivileged and disadvantaged families are working in her industry as labourers.
“We supply our finished goods to more than 14-15 districts including Dhaka,” said Tahmina Akhter Minu, owner of Minu Boutique House in Shapura area. She is satisfied over her business that generates employment of around 50 women.
“We want to highlight our heritage side by side with the business,” Minu said adding that business promotion is very important for women empowerment along with their economic emancipation. “We have founded ‘Angona Boutique and Fashion’ being operated by our Angana Mohila Samity successfully making more than 100 women income- generator,” said Iffat Ara, director of the samity.
Similarly, Daudpur Mohila Kolyan Samity’s Shefali Boutique and Mohona Mohila Kolyan Samity’s Mohona Boutique have made at least 175 other women self-reliant.
“We have linked around 50 women with skill development training for their livelihood,” said Anwara Begum, president of Dashmari Distressed Women Welfare Association.
After completing their training they are doing block, boutique and embroidery works in their respective areas and many of them attained their long-cherished economic emancipation.
Anwara Begum told BSS that the boutique houses were established and operated with assistance of the district women affairs office.
Shobnom Shirin, District Women Affairs Officer, told BSS that the department of women affairs has been working relentlessly for women empowerment through business promotion for them.
Under the microcredit programme for making women self-employed, 20,504 beneficiaries were given small-loans worth around Taka 13.10 crore. Upazila level distressed and helpless women were given loan from Taka 5,000 to Taka 15,000 each.
A total of 2,380 women were given training on various income-generating trades like sewing, embroidery, boutique and tailoring and they were also given allowance worth around Taka 1.31 crore.
Distribution of 288 sewing machines among the trained women was completed.
Under the women income-generating training programme, 60 women were imparted six-month motor driving training, 60 women six-month computer servicing and 1,440 others were given three-month vocational training on various trades. They were also given post-training allowance.
Some 1,356 registered volunteer women associations were provided with grants worth Taka 2.31 crore. Under the distressed women and children assistance fund, 338 beneficiaries were given financial support worth around
Taka 16.88 lakh.