Refugee success Story

Now I have my peace of mind

mother-cook-traderBona, 33 years old: “Cooking is one of my greatest passions; I never get tired of cooking. I always prepare foods for my family and friends who come over to visit. However, not too long ago I started enterprising my skills. One day, a friend who had come to visit me suggested I market my skills and prepare something for sale.

I am now into the “atsieke” business. I took advantage of the abundance and relatively cheap price of cassava over here which is used to prepare “atsieke”. Through the generosity of one woman who trades in cassava, I got my first supply of cassava for the atsieke business on a credit basis. Although, sales were a bit slow at the initial stages, things are going on well now. Currently, I have lots of customers here at the camp as well as outside the camp where some people sometimes place orders all the way from Accra.

I am really proud of myself that I can now earn money to take care of my two daughters. They are proud of me too and are always happy to help me especially to package the atieke I prepare for sale”.

Bona is a 33 year old mother of two who has been a refugee for about 4 years now. Before the conflict in Cote d’Ivoire, Bona was a hairdresser. She stayed with her uncle and operated her salon which was located in front of their house. Business was good, and she could earn about USD 20 a day from the salon.

When she was not attending to her customers at the salon, she will cook for her family and attend church services. She loved doing these things as well as spending time with her fiancé. When the crisis started, her home was attacked by rebels. Her uncle who was into active politics was murdered and her salon was looted. “My uncle and other family members who were in the house at the time were killed in cold blood”.

Bona fled with her two daughters and came to Ghana. Although, she lost a lot due to the crisis she has her peace of mind now and that makes her happy. To her “refugee life is difficult and one needs mental and physical courage to be one”.

Refugees – ordinary people living through extraordinary times.