Project report: Gurdofarid, Tajikistan

Grantee: Gurdofarid, Tajikistan
Project: “Support Centre for Migrants” – sewing workshops and business training for migrants and their families

Unemployment is one of the main challenges facing our citizens. It is also one of the main factors driving migration abroad by working age Tajik men. Experts say that, along with low levels of education, unemployment is a factor in rising crime, radicalisation and a drift among young people towards radical tendencies and groups. In addition, statistics show that it is less educated and unemployed women who are often victims of gender-based violence in the home and outside. The only way to improve people’s future chances is through education and training in a trade, and by finding work for them. 

With this in mind, and thanks to a small grant from the BEARR Trust, on 18 March 2022 the Republic Social Organisation ‘Gurdofarid’ opened a sewing workshop and a centre for support of migrants in the village Khistevarz in Bobodjon Gafurovsky district. 

Gurdofarid works to raise the legal, economic and financial literacy of the population and to promulgate awareness of a healthy lifestyle and innovative technology among youth, women, girls and other vulnerable groups in society. The organisation is also involved in social projects, educational centres and schools, conferences, training events and camps, as well as creating new workplaces.

The Migrant Support Centre seeks to find ways to help unemployed people, migrants and their families in the village of Khistevarz to open their own business or find work in various spheres. During the course of the project, Gurdofarid organised three sewing and tailoring courses, each of them three months long and for 50 inhabitants of the town of Guliston and Khistevarz village. The participants were from migrants’ families, including migrant workers, their wives and children. At the end of the course they received diplomas from Gurdofarid’s partner organisation, the B Gafurovsky district branch of Tajikistan’s Centre for Adult Education. 

Besides this, in cooperation with a credit organisation Imkon 2014, three start-up training events were organised for ten of the most active and successful participants in the other courses, so as to provide them with the skills needed to open their own business – business planning, time management, budgeting etc. The best of the business plans were given access to credit at very low interest rates. 

After all three training courses were completed, the participants took part in a job fair organised at the end of the project jointly with the Department of Employment in B Garfurovsky district. This enabled them to look for jobs with the greater employability that the courses had given them, and they were very motivated as well as better trained.  

A woman from the town of Guliston, a teacher by training, learned to sew for herself in the first instance and then for neighbours and relatives. She attended our course in sewing and tailoring, and was able to expand her client base and earn more money. Another participant in our course from Khistevarz was encouraged to become a seamstress by her mother. She was delighted to complete our course as she can now earn her own money and improve her standard of living. 

Most participants in our courses are not only earning a living from what they learned but are teaching others the same skills. In the longer term,the sewing centre and the migrant support centre will stay in Khistevarz and Guliston. They can be used to train young people and adults, and migrant workers and potential migrant workers can visit them to seek advice or improve their skills. 

Organisation contact details:
Khistevarz Village, Bobodjan Gafurovsky district, 19, Khodi Kenjaev street  
Тel: +992 92 830 9998 
Guliston, 30 Istiklol Street, 2nd floor of the Iram shop  
Тel: +992 92 872 0171 

Author contact details: 
Rahbar Madjikdova 
Executive Director of Gurdofarid

Photos by Munira Ahmedova and Muhayo Pulotova

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