Paak Foundation opens free tailoring school at Nsaru Trading Centre

Economic fortunes are set to roll for communities surrounding Nsaru Trading Centre in the outskirts of Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe, following the opening of a Tailoring and Design School at the marketplace.

A newly registered charitable organization – Paak Foundation – has opened the school to economically empower underprivileged youths and women from the trading centre and the surrounding areas.

Speaking after handing over sewing machines on Sunday, the foundation’s founder and director, Talha Malik, said the major objective of the charity is to provide livelihood programmes for underprivileged women and the youth.

Malik (in green golf shirt) handing over a machine to Village Head Ibrahim Alifu as beneficiaries look on

“The idea is equip women and the youth with skills that can help them earn additional income so that they are able to take care of their school-going children. We expect that after the completion of tailoring training, the trainees will be able to get a good job or venture into small and medium businesses so as to improve their living standards and also to support their families and dependants,” he said.

Malik disclosed that the foundation will not be charging fees for the lessons.

“These lessons are absolutely free of charge and anyone interested to learn the trade is welcome. We are also planning to open a welding school here and many other areas across the country. I wish to appeal to individuals and organizations of goodwill to donate in kind to the centre so that more women and young people can benefit from the livelihood progammes,” he said.

One of the beneficiaries, Halima Juma, described the school as a timely intervention for the deprived women and youth in the area.

Juma said she expects that beneficiaries would invest in small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in tailoring and embroidery once they are through with the training.

Village Head Ibrahim Alifu hailed the opening of the school, stressing that it will provide an alternate employment opportunity for the empowerment of women in the surrounding villages.

“This is a great opportunity to the poor women both married and unmarried to earn their livelihood if they successfully complete the training. As chiefs, we will work closely together with the foundation in achieving the set goal,” said Alifu.

Studies have shown that SMEs account for the majority of businesses worldwide and are important contributors to job creation and global economic development. They represent about 90 percent of businesses and more than 50 percent of employment worldwide.

Formal SMEs contribute up to 40 percent of national income (GDP) in emerging economies.

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