Unzila Welfare Organization
Naheed, a resident of a small tribal village in Jacobabad, Sindh, formed the Unzila Welfare Organization (UWO) in 2004 in memory of her beloved daughter Unzila, who couldn’t survive due to cardiac problems. Unzila Welfare Organization was established with an aim to work for improving the living standards and conditions of the local community. It focuses on health care for children, enhancing the income generating skills of women and providing sources for livelihood to people living in extreme poverty. It has also been working for promoting peace in the village, organizing free medical camps for deserving, and rehabilitation of the flood affectees in Sindh.
The organization faced resistance from the community that would normally not allow women to participate in social and economic activities. At institutional level, it faced the challenges of lack of financial resources, technical knowledge, skills and basic understanding about project planning and development.
The Hum Qadam trainings have helped the organization to address these issues to a greater extent. Unzila now has a team of professionals equipped with basic knowledge and skills about project planning, development and management.
‘We were completely unaware of project planning and management process. The Hum Qadam training and continuous mentoring support was very helpful in giving us a better understanding about project planning and management. We will start any new initiative with proper planning and due diligence and will manage it more professionally for achieving better results’.
Nadeem- Member of the Executive Board, Unzila Welfare Organization
The leadership and LRM trainings gave the founder and her team members the confidence and knowledge to reach out to the community and convince them to engage in the development efforts. They were also able to generate funds by convincing the local philanthropists and landlords to contribute to development initiatives.
‘…Before attending the Hum Qadam project trainings, it was difficult for me to even introduce myself to people. Hum Qadam has been a great source of inspiration for me to grow, improve personal strengths and gain self-confidence to reach out to the community particularly women. It has enabled our organization to expand the work from a small village to seven districts with the help of 200 to 250 volunteers. UWO now has an executive body of 10 members including three women. The general body consists of 100 members including 15 women. We are confident that the learning from the Hum Qadam trainings will help us in taking a more professional and community-oriented approach in our long-term future initiatives.’
Naheed-Founder of the Welfare Organization
In a tribal area where honor killing is practiced, enmity persists for years and generations, women are not allowed to go beyond their domestic roles and the community and the tribal leaders are generally reluctant to change, it is the biggest challenge to motivate people for a change. In this challenging environment, initiating the UWO by a woman itself is a significant achievement which has been successful in gradually gaining the community’s trust and ownership for development efforts.