Parti Meghwar a 38 years old entrepreneur from Umerkot is an example of courage and commitment. She was engaged to Ashok when she was only three years old. When she was nine, her family learnt that Ashok had a mental disease but the village panchayat (council) decided that the engagement could not be broken so Parti had to marry Ashok. They got married in 2001 and she moved to Ashok’s home. After 16 months, Ashok’s brothers threw them out of the house. Ashok was not earning even a single penny to provide for his family. Parti decided to take a lead in earning a living. She pawned the jewelry received in her dowry to a local money-lender for Rs. 20,000 at a monthly interest rate of six percent. She purchased a plot for Rs. 14,500 and constructed a hut (Chaunra) with mud and thatch. From the remaining money, her brother recommended that she start a firewood business. Parti purchased firewood and started selling it in the neighborhood. The following month, the moneylender told her to pay back his full amount within two days or he would seize the gold ornaments against which she had borrowed the money. Parti felt anxious and hopeless. That’s when one of her neighbors told her about Thardeep Microfinance. She went to the Thardeep Microfinance office and eventually obtained a loan of Rs. 10,000 and sold two of her goats to pay back and recover her jewelry from the moneylender. Parti continued her small enterprise selling firewood, and paid back her loan to Thardeep on time, after which she applied for a second loan of Rs. 20, 000.
In addition to the firewood she also bought a sewing machine and started to stitch clothes for children and women of her neighborhood, which provided an additional source of income. She saved Rs. 15,000 from the enterprise and took her husband to a doctor. The doctor told her that the required treatment was very expensive and only possible in Karachi or Lahore. She decided to save enough money and take her husband for treatment. She got a third loan of Rs.30, 000 and bought another sewing machine and offered to teach sewing to the girls of her neighborhood. Now she teaches them and gets additional products and income. Parti added a pacca room and bathroom in her house and purchased three goats.
Parti’s resolution fulfilled her dream, she was selected as the best Microentrepreneur by Citi-PPAF Micro-Entrepreneurship Awards in 2014 and received a cash price of Rs. 150,000. She took her husband to Karachi for medical treatment.
“It was a great gesture from Citi-PPAF, now I have good hope for my husband’s early recovery.” She said when receiving the award.