Woman at the sewing machine

Help for self-help among gypsies

No. 1296
distressed, widows
Ukraine

in the Carpathian region (Transcarpathia) there are more than 40,000 gypsies, which of themselves represent four linguistic groups. they live in isolation in their own villages called tabs. the life of most gypsies, today "roma", is often marked by poverty. it is difficult for us people from the west to understand why up to 20% of the population do not have identity documents. the consequence is high unemployment, which leads to poverty. at this point it must be said that the living conditions in the different tabs differ greatly. a special group that is most affected by poverty are widows, orphans and women who have been abandoned by their husbands. often they live in unimaginable conditions - without water, electricity, hygiene means etc. - because they have no other choice. 

Here we would like to offer those affected a help for self-help as a help service - circle of friends - so that women, such as widows and abandoned women with small children, have the opportunity to provide for themselves through employment in appropriate accommodation.

In the first place we care for widows who belong to a parish and women who have been abandoned by their husbands because of their faith. those affected are provided with heating and food in winter. with the project "help for self-help" we would like to care for such families and offer them different possibilities for self-sufficiency: e.g. a sewing machine, chickens for poultry farming, a goat or pig, a small vegetable garden or similar. often it does not take much for such a needy family to survive poverty.

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