From left are Jeris Kundin, Tan Maki and Anna Karapi while at back are SBDC women in development officer Maria Kalap and business development manager Nathan Timo
Anna Karapi, Tan Maki, SBDC women in development officer Maria Kalap and Jeris Kundin
By MALUM NALU
We are also being inundated by an avalanche of second-hand clothes.
This status quo, however, may soon become a thing of the past with the intensive training received by three women from rural areas of the country.
It comes at a time when there is more support being given to women through such organisations as PNG Women in Business, and when the first PNG Women in Business Expo was staged in Lae earlier this year.
The three women, two from Jiwaka area of Western Highlands province and one from Eastern Highland province, were brought to
The SBDC, for the record, is also the major supporter of PNG Women in Business.
From the beginning of February to the end of May this year, the three women have been undergoing intensive training at the institute, which the SBDC hopes will reap handsome rewards by them going back home and training more women.
The SBDC paid for their travel, training and daily living costs in
Having lunch with them at a
Take the case of Tan Maki, a sewing trainer at Kuling Star Vocation Centre in Minj, who has only been educated to only Grade Five level.
“I am very happy at receiving this training,” she says.
“I have learned everything there is to know about making clothes over the four months.
“We have learned many things such as how to make school uniforms, long trousers and shirts for men, as well as six-pocket trousers.”
Anna Karapi, from Isametoka village in Goroka, is an informal sector businesswoman who is already making clothes.
“I sell clothes and sell them at Goroka Market, everything from meri blouses for all occasions to skirts and tops,” she says.
“I sell at Goroka Market and in town to working-class ladies.
“Over the 16 weeks, I have learned many new things and am now more advanced in sewing, especially in things like designing, pattern making and then construction of garments.
“When I go back, I will be able to attend to all orders.
“I’m a church group leader as well and teach many Adventist ladies.
“With these new skills, I will be able to help them even more and it’s not only my church members I am talking about, but other denominations as well.
“I will also be able to help mothers in rural areas.
“Apart from that, I will also be running my small business.
“I’ve already got big plans to expand.
“I will teach my son how to design and cut, and the wife will be trained how to construct the garment.
“What I have learned will not be wasted, and I say this because there is no tailoring company in Goroka.”
Jeris Kundin, like Maki, is a sewing trainer at Kuling Star Vocational Centre in Minj.
“I have been teaching vocational students for a long time about sewing,” she says.
“When I go back, I will teach the women how to make long trousers for their husbands.
“We have many students learning about sewing at Kuling Star.
“We will be able to attend to whatever orders placed such as six-pocket trousers, industrial wear, corporate uniforms and industrial wear.
“We will be able to sew everything from children’s wear to men’s wear to women’s wear.”
SBDC business development manager, Nathan Timo, explains it’s all about empowering women from rural areas.
“A lot of women are getting into sewing and tailoring, and this particular project is all about empowering women in rural areas to improve livelihood, create employment opportunities and alleviate poverty,” he says.
“We are empowering women in rural areas so that they can help other women.
“SBDC brought them here and paid for their return airfares, lodging, course fees and a small living allowance.
“SBDC is also providing them two industrial machines.”
Karapi wants Papua New Guineans to support their cause by stopping from buying second-hand clothes, and for the government to give more support to the country’s clothing industry.
“For four years, I’ve stopped from buying second-hand clothes,” she says.
“Second-hand clothes are making women so lazy.
“This training we have received is very good.
“The government must support our clothing industry.”