Statistically, it is more likely for a South Sudanese woman to die in childbirth than to be given the opportunity to graduate from elementary school. But lack of education isn’t the problem. It’s merely a symptom. Instead, it’s the way women are valued. Or, rather, the way they are not.
His house, his livestock, and his wife – each one another piece of his property. While there are some incredible, Christ-following men in South Sudan, it is more common for women to be simply be seen as a piece of property. The husband paid a hefty dowry for his wife or wives and so he, in a sense, owns her.
After years of marriage and seven beautiful children, Amuna Margret would have said that she was happily married. But as is common in South Sudan, her husband decided to take another wife and that’s when the abuse began.
She would have left if it were that easy. But it never is. She knew that if he were going to beat her, he wouldn’t provide what she and her children needed when they needed it. Her friends – her community – surrounded her and encouraged her to take action.
Amuna started by simply collecting stones to sell in the market and with the small amount she earned, she started selling greens. But this was never enough and that is when a friend introduced her to Seed Effect.
She received her first microloan and used it to grow her business by purchasing rice and sugar. With her second microloan, she bought beans and cooking oil.
And it all began to grow. In a matter of months, this young mother, who had little hope with no job and no way to care for herself or her children had started her own business. Seed Effect invested in her, a South Sudanese entrepreneur, and fear was replaced by hope and empowerment.
Amuna managed her business well and used the profits earned to enroll her five oldest children in primary school. And in January of 2013, she gave her life to Christ.
She thanked the Seed Effect staff for investing in her and empowering her to improve her life and her to care for her family.
But the fact that his property suddenly became something so much more, has not only affected Amuna, but also her husband. Seeing Amuna be empowered to stand firm has transformed them both.
Today Amuna plans to continue to grow her business and she dreams of building a storefront in the market in South Sudan.