SIXTEEN women became the proud owners of brand new Singer sewing machines at the weekend.
The handing over ceremony at Kalabu settlement outside Suva on Saturday marked the Ministry of Social Welfare, Women and Poverty Monitoring's 19th training session aimed at encouraging poverty alleviation through women.
The handover was the result of a successful partnership between the Ministry and Courts Fiji Limited.
Minister for Women, Doctor Jiko Luveni said members of the ministry spoke to the women about the women's empowerment and how they could make their own incomes.
"We explained that once they had learned this skill (sewing), they could make an income from their homes," she said.
Dr Luveni said their partnership with Courts meant a lot to the ministry as well as to the women. "Courts is helpful to us as they provide tailoring and sewing skills to the women, generating skills as well as interest in tailoring.
"They also have a scheme which provides the women with more flexible purchasing options when it comes to them buying their own machines," she said.
Courts director for marketing, Anil Senewiratne said the original price of the Singer machines were $429. "But these women are being given a discount and are only paying $299.00 for a machine from Courts," he said.
"Courts is extremely proud to be involved in your life's journey and to provide support and assistance for this strong community initiative by the ministry to eradicate poverty," said Mr Senewiratne.
The partnership began in April last year, when the two organisations came together to attempt the process of poverty eradication through women's empowerment in the country.