A cherished Dream comes true for Hampamma! : Vimukti Pothnal

Hampamma,is from Malkapura village in Raichur district. She completed her Pre-University course and got married when she was 19 years old to her beau in the village. Both she and her husband moved to Bangalore in search of employment. She found a job in a garment factory where she was paid Rs.7, 000 per month and her husband started working as a car driver. She became pregnant and when she could no longer bear the strain of commuting and working in a factory, she quit her job and returned to her village and soon delivered a healthy baby girl. Three months after her baby, Deepika was born, her husband cut-off all contacts with her and has never visited their baby or even called her over the phone. She has been staying with her mother-in-law who is 55 years old and works seasonally as a coolie. With no steady income and her husband having deserted her, she was upset and discouraged not knowing what her future will be.

It was during this time that staff members from Vimukti Charitable Trust visited her village and talked to the community about the Bridge-IT project that was about to start. Her name was suggested as a possible entrepreneur for the village since she had completed PUC. Although she had fears of whether she can measure up to the challenges of running a business using the computer, she was desperate for a job and wanted to grab the opportunity telling herself that she will somehow manage. She felt incredibly happy when she was selected. Her mother in law encouraged her. She soon realized that this project will not only be helpful for her and her family but for the whole village.

When she started, she had no knowledge of computers and how to operate one. After attending the initial trainings, with her baby in her arms, she started gaining knowledge on how to operate a computer and start her business. She learnt about online services and slowly started trying out what she learnt. Going to the local government school and teaching the children using the computer was again a challenge. She determined to try, and now enjoys the classes. She loves teaching students at school using the laptop and projector, which makes the classes enjoyable. Children are active and attend regularly. She also facilitates adult literacy classes in the evenings, and many have become functionally literate, and respect her. Hampamma has gained self-confidence and interacts with people with her head held high.

2 years after joining the Bridge-IT project, Hampamma is a confident, young entrepreneur. She has opened her shop in her village and offers online services to the community. She plans to further develop her business by investing in new equipment for her shop. She has applied to operate as a Common Service Point (CSP) for financial services and hopes to apply to be the Community Service Centre (CSC) in her village. She is presently making a profit of around Rs.7,000 per month and wants to be a successful businesswoman. She is happy to help people in her village through her services. Her community find it helpful that they can get their online work done in the village without having to travel to town, thus saving time and money; her advices unemployed youth in her village not to waste their time but to study hard and find a job. She is now economically and socially developed. She wants her 3 year old Deepika, to be a graduate.

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