From starving to working on agricultural fields, from no income to earning AFN 6,000 per month, she has gone through it all.

Afghangul, 47, mother of 5 kids, lives in Sar-e-Asyab, a village of Chimtal district. Although Chimtal district is connected to major economic hub of northern Afghanistan, Mazar-e-Sharif, by asphalted road but local population is poor and mainly busy with livestock rearing and agricultural activities. Afghangul says “Traditionally, women don’t own the businesses here, whatever women do credit goes to men”. But in her case it is different and it all started after HiH Af started mobilization in her village, she says “I always wanted to earn and therefore, I used to work in agricultural fields whenever I found a job to earn AFN 100 a day, then HiH Af started the ‘Socio-Economic Empowerment of Women and Men’ project in our village and I immediately decided to join because they were offering business and skills training”.

Afghangul joined Sehat Self-Help Group and attended regular group meetings, received series of training including Group Management, Micro-finance, Business Development Services and Vocational Skills training. She says “in business training I realized my potentials and how can it help me generate income, then I decided to start rearing livestock and upon completion of the vocational training, HiH Af supported me by providing two goats, then I borrowed AFN 19,000 from the SHG and bought a calf after three months I sold the calf for AFN 32,000”.

Afghangul earned AFN 10,000 net profit by selling the calf and purchased two goats, her goats reproduced and she earned another AFN 6,000 from selling the baby goats. Now she owns 4 goats as well as she has repaid AFN 16,000 of the loan. She says “I never thought I would earn so much, but now I am confident that my business will grow bigger and I will make more income to contribute in my family expenses”.

Afghangul’s husband is very happy and supports her with the business by bringing grass and feed for the animals; she is contributing in family expenses while she doesn’t have to do tough works in agricultural fields anymore. She says “I have learnt that women can have their own businesses, I am encouraging other women in my group [Self-Help Group] to start a business and become independent, I am earning around AFN 6,000 per month now and it will increase within next season”.

Afghangul is currently attending Life Skills Training for Entrepreneurs and she is very happy to learn reading and writing.

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