Economic Development Opportunities
When we started 11 years ago, our mission was to help the vulnerable people of Lesotho through education and, if possible, equip them with job skills and economic support. We are now at the point where we can provide small-scale economic development opportunities to a few Basotho people, empowering them to create change in their country, using their voices to lead and inspire hope in their way. In addition to our social worker, Francis, we are supporting two talented, resilient, and extraordinary women. One of them, Rethabile Evelyn Palo, has been hired by Bountiful Hope Foundation. The other, 'Mapoulo Peeane (see below), still needs your support. Please read their stories and consider contributing to 'Mapoulo's dream.
Rethabile Evelyn Palo
Rethabile Evelyn Palo (pictured right) is a woman whose family did not have the funds to send her to school after the 8th grade. Instead of giving up, at the tender age of 14, Evelyn moved to the capital city of Maseru on her own and started to work as a housemaid. She saved up her money and went to school at night because she knew the value of education. She worked hard and graduated high school. She continued to work in order to enroll in college. Through her determination, she earned her degree and secured a job as a bank teller. The odds of Evelyn actually doing this in a poverty-stricken country are enormous. Her tenacity, intelligence, and social skills impressed us so much that we hired her! Her story provides hope to the BH orphans. Thanks to your involvement, Evelyn is now the Project Manager for Bountiful Hope Foundation in Lesotho and we could not be happier with her performance.
Hopefully, next spring she will be able visit the United States to speak about our work in Lesotho. We hope to introduce her to all of you!
Another remarkable woman whom we recently met is ‘Mapoulo Peeane. Six years ago, ‘Mapoulo became a mom as a teenager and lacked any employable skills. She was educated by the Good Shepherd Sisters and learned basic catering and mothering skills at their Center for teen moms. During that time, ‘Mapoulo realized her talents and was determined to go as far as she could in order to provide for her daughter. After graduating, she continued her vocational education on her own and she worked tirelessly to improve her skills. Now, 6 years later, ‘Mapoulo has become one of the most sought-after caterers in Maseru, even catering to the U.S. Embassy! Being a teen mom, this extraordinary young woman has overcome tremendous odds as well. Her determination and spirit are truly unique and special. Please keep in mind that we are frequently presented with proposals and it is extremely rare that we act on them. Either we do not have the funds or the proposal does not meet the standards that we set. ‘Mapoulo is diiferent. She is extraordinary and her goal is to build a business that employs as many vulnerable and marginalized people as possible, including other teen moms. Her work could truly have a far-reaching domino effect. We are seeking 100 donors to contribute $70 each. This will allow ‘Mapoulu to open a small kitchen and buy the necessary equipment to expand her catering business. Her father has already pledged to support her by paying the monthly rent for her business. In addition to having the support of her family, ‘Mapoulo will be providing us with monthly updates regarding her progress. We believe in her so strongly that we want to continue to build our relationship with her. She has already agreed to be involved in the vocational education catering center that we are planning to build in the future and we believe she can be a beacon of hope to BH orphans and other teen moms.
Thank you for being a partner with us. We could not do this without you!
Bill Bierling, Steve Kascht, Paul Trollinger, Cindy Trollinger, Curt Spykstra, and Bridget Stewart
The Board of Directors of Bountiful Hope Foundation