Behind the Scarf: Nisera
For years, we’ve been selling the beautiful infinity scarves made by the employees of Life Stitch and the graduates of the Women’s Vocational Training Center, and we want you to get to know these resilient women who are hand sewing each one. All of the graduates from our program have left empowered, encouraged, and with a hope for a brighter future.
We hope you enjoy this series of getting to know the stories of the women who are behind the scenes of the beautiful LifeStitch scarves you wear each Fall.
“I am 35 year old and have 5 children. My childhood was ruined because of the extreme thoughts of my family, especially my mother and uncle. They used to think that sending girls to school is shameful and a sin. I wanted to go school but I was not allowed to even leave my home until I got married at the age of 15 years.
My husband served in the Military and I just lived in my village with my children. I had seen many difficult days because of illiteracy. I realized many times that, “ an uneducated person is blind”. Many times I got angry at my uncle and mother and had harsh words with them. There was no institute in my village that taught adults or gave technical training to a woman like me, and I got depressed. I had strong feelings that my life was ruined and that I had no hope. It made me feel that I really wanted to educate my children.
Just a few years ago, my husband retired after serving the military for 18 years, and he needed a new job to feed our family. After a long discussion, we decided to move to Gilgit with family from our village. This is 5 hours away! We rented a house, took all the children to school, and one day I heard about the Women’s Vocational Training Center from a neighbor. The next day I went with her to the training center and got admission for the sewing and cutting class. I really wanted to learn different skills to support my family. Getting admission was like a dream becoming reality. It gave me hope and confidence, which gradually overcame my depression. I had heard different testimonies about successful women which created a strong desire in me to achieve my dreams.
I graduated on September 30, 2015 and got a sewing machine that I know will help me in my future. I still remember the day when I sewed my first Kamiez and Shalwar(shirts and trousers) for my five children. I will never forget these feelings I had. This was not only making the clothes of my children, but I was also saving 3000 rupees! Now some other ladies are coming to my house with fabric to sew shirts and trousers for them, which provides me a chance to make some income. I want to run a tailoring shop from my house to make a respectable livelihood for my family and help my children complete their studies. God bless all those who helped me get to this point!”
*Names and photos may have been changed for security purposes