Pain and Loss Turned into Hope

Madina in front of her door

Madina’s life in Uganda had been characterized by struggle, loss, and pain for many years. She became an orphan at a very young age. Her relatives denied her a chance at education. When she got married, her husband died at an early age, leaving her as the breadwinner of her family. When she joined ICM’s Transform program, her pain and loss turned into hope. This is her story.

Madina left the village for the city and got a house help job that provided for her family for five years. Unfortunately, she lost her job when the COVID-19 pandemic hit Uganda.

Helplessly, Madina returned to the village with no option but to fight and survive. She started small-scale farming, but the wage she earned seasonally could barely be enough to care for her 16-year-old son and three grandchildren.

When the pastor in her community invited her to join Transform, she was happy for the opportunity to learn. “I felt good, I felt I would get something important out of it,” she said.

Madina outside her house

During Transform. Madina’s mentality towards correction changed. “I used to be very angry and I would hate people that would correct me, but I have learned to love and accept criticism.” she shared.

Madina’s belief in God completely changed from viewing him as someone who doesn’t love her to someone who cares. When she received love and comfort from ICM trainers when her granddaughter died, she saw that God cared about her.

Madina also started a half-cake snack business, something she learned during the livelihood sessions. Every morning, she would prepare snacks and sells them to the people of the community. By the end of the day, she gets a profit of UGS3000 (US$0.90).

Madina with her homemade snacks

With this profit, Madina increased the income in her home. This covered their daily expenses and also helped her save for the future.

“The profit I get from my half cake business helps me have the basic needs at home for my family. I am happy to say that every day, I save UGS500 (US$0.10) which has added real value to me.”

Madina is happy and grateful that she is a business owner, something that she had never dreamt of. “I never dream of ever having a business outside being a farmer. I am surely not the same as I used to be. I am a changed person now.”

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