09 March 2020

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Women for Women International works in countries affected by conflict, where violence, poverty and gender inequality combine to make life unimaginably challenging for women.

Through the charity's year-long training programme, women gain knowledge and skills to become financially independent, improve their family's health, connect to support networks, and make their voices heard at home and in their communities.

Players of People's Postcode Lottery have raised £450,000 to support the work of Women for Women International in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). This money is enabling 750 women to access the life-changing training programme and build a brighter future for their families. Women attend training in groups of 25, forming close friendships that provide a vital source of security and strength following trauma, loss and isolation.

Those on the programme make incredible progress in just 12 months. Last year, on average, participants in DRC increased their daily earnings by 105%.

Along with greater financial security, women gain confidence to use their voice and have a say in the decisions that affect their daily lives - creating change that benefit whole communities.

Bahati, a recent programme graduate from South Kivu in DRC, said: "Before Women for Women International, I was so shy that I never questioned it when my rights were violated, it seemed normal to me.
"With the knowledge I gained during the programme, I discovered a leader within myself - able to defend my rights before the members of my community, even in front of authorities. Now I am seen by other women in my group as a leader. I also produce handcrafts and baskets to sell and earn my own income. The profits allow me to contribute to our household expenses. I no longer feel like a burden, but a person who people count on."