RYTHM Foundation helps a Sri Lankan mother achieve her dream of becoming a beautician
Thenesh Madhavi was born into a poor family in Kunchankaladdi village in Jaffna, Sri Lanka. With five daughters, her father struggled to provide for the family as their only source of income came from his bicycle repair shop in the village. The girls were not able to pursue their education after finishing their secondary school.
From an early age, Madhavi harboured the dream of becoming a beautician but given her family’s financial situation, she had to abandon the dream. Madhavi who is 28 now, married at the age of 17 and has two children now, aged five and 10.
Even though managing the household and her young children kept her busy, Madhavi never forgot about her dream. She managed to save some money from the small income her husband makes as a common labourer. She went to a training institute to enroll in a beauty course but was told that married women were not allowed to join.
“I was very disappointed when I was told that. I waited for years to save this money only to be told that I am not qualified,” she recalled.
Despite the roadblock, she remained hopeful. One day, through some friends, she came to know about the free vocational training programme offered by Sarvodaya, a non-governmental organisation that has been working towards creating a no poverty, no affluence and conflict-free society in Sri Lanka.
“I was very excited when I heard about it and applied for a beautician training course. I was called for an interview and selected, all for free!” she says excitedly.
“I have now successfully completed three months of the course and have even started my own small business. Now I am a professional beautician. I thought I would never get a chance to achieve my dream in my lifetime, but with the support of Sarvodaya, my dream of becoming a beautician has come true,” she added.
Sarvodaya also helped by providing her with the necessary support to connect with banking institutions and government officers to obtain loans needed for her business.
RYTHM Foundation supports Sarvodaya’s mission to uplift and empower various disadvantaged groups in Sri Lanka by funding its initiatives such as vocational training and entrepreneur development.