Enny is a mother of 3 living in Diepsloot, a densely populated township in the north of Johannesburg. Her children grew up with a father who was often abusive and would physically assault her and the children. She would also act out violently towards her children because of the ongoing stress she constantly faced. Her first born son, having seen and experienced the abuse first-hand, would act violently as well and bully his classmates. Many a time Enny was called into the school because of his outbursts.
Enny encountered HOPE worldwide’s early childhood development program and joined a Parent Support Group where emotional support and positive parental guidance are provided to mothers. This helped the soft-spoken woman learn how to correctly deal with everyday stresses and how to build a long-lasting bond with her children. A separation from the children’s father has also contributed to a more peaceful home environment. Enny is now able to sit down, joke around and laugh with her kids and is no longer being called into school regarding bullying.
But despite improvements in the home environment, Enny still struggled financially. Money was so scarce that food would have to be prioritised above all. She even had to ask the school principal for assistance because she couldn’t afford the children’s school uniforms. In order to provide for her family, she sold vetkoeks (fried dough bread) which was very unsafe. An early morning start to the day when the streets are still empty and gangs can go unnoticed can be treacherous for a woman.
Regardless of the dangerous conditions, Enny would have to wake up at 4am to prepare the vetkoeks on a fire since her home had no electricity. HOPE worldwide then provided her with nutritional food parcels. The assistance she received allowed her to focus on elevating her vetkoek sales into a business. The money she previously spent on food was invested, which allowed to grow from selling vetkoeks to building her own spaza (tuckshop). She no longer has to put herself in a vulnerable environment to provide for her family.
Enny used the opportunity that HOPE worldwide provided, as a platform for personal development. Her humility to learn and her entrepreneurial spirit has enabled her to take leaps forward and grow as a mother and a businesswoman.