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Mena started last year feeling anxious.

Her husband works outside the community and sends home as much of his earnings as he can, but it's not enough to keep pace with rising costs.

Then her community was visited by Self Help Group leaders from our partner WACT. Sponsorship from Australia meant she could join the group, and in just a short time, she's learnt new skills that mean she can:

  • Grow better food
  • Earn an income
  • Stay safe from sickness and disease
  • Keep her daughter in school

New hope. New life. 

Your gift today of $50 can sponsor a woman like Mena to join a Self Help Group... for a whole new year.




Meet the women you're supporting


New year, new hope

Twelve months ago, Mena (top left) lived alone with her fourteen year old daughter in a community in Kailali region, western Nepal. Her husband and son were both away in other regions working, sending home money to help keep food on the table and young Prema in school.

But the war in Ukraine, with its impact on fuel prices, and slow recovery of the economy after COVID-19, mean everything in Nepal is more expensive than ever - and there just aren't enough opportunities to earn a living.

Petrol is more expensive in Nepal than in Australia

But wages are up to 90% less*

A year ago, Mena joined a Self Help Group run by our partner, WACT, in her community. She wants to be able to keep her daughter in school and has been labouring in local paddy fields to earn a little extra to add to the family income.

The work was irregular, demanding and paid very little. It seemed likely to Mena that her daughter would need to leave school, like her son, and try to find employment outside the community in a hotel or as a domestic worker. 

Then facilitators from our partner WACT visited the community to talk about a new model of development that bring women together to meet their own challenges.

"I was so excited to join this group, especially because you didn't already have to have some money to join,*" Mena says. "This meant we could all come to learn news things and start to earn our own incomes. We even contribute a small amount each month to savings that any group member can use if they have need. This means we don't need to borrow from thelandlords, who charge us very high interest."

Now the Treasurer of the group, Mena learnt from her facilitator about how to breed goats, care for them and get the best price at market.

"I now have one goat and two babies, and I hope to have more soon," Mena says. "I've also learnt a lot about how to prepare food safely, clean water and the importance of hygiene. This makes a very big difference."

I think the biggest thing is now I can see a plan for the future. We can do anything if we do it together.

Mena, Kailali Region

Mena feeds one of her goats, which generates income to help keep Prema in school

* All Self Help Groups require funding - wages for a skilled facilitator, transport costs, monitoring of the groups to improve them and be accountable, training materials etc.

Mena and others in her community can join for free because of the generous donations of INFA supporters.

You can learn more about the project and its costs by clicking the link below. 

Women's Self Help groups are part of a project called CONECT run in the Kailali district by our partner Welfare Association for Children, Tikapur (WACT).

Our ambitious plan is to increase the number of groups to benefit at least another 600 women over the next five years.