Magreth Mtese is a self-employed young woman who is a beneficiary of PANDA programme, the 2019 cohort. She is a 22 years old young woman with a Diploma in Laboratory Technology from Dar es salaam Institute of Technology (DIT).

She joined the programme with hope to realize her dreams by addressing the challenges she faced which include lack of stable income. Other challenges which compelled Magreth to join PANDA programme were lack of capital and overdependence to her family to cater for her various life needs.

When she joined the programme, after successfully selection, she chose to attend training in catering services. This was to fulfil her dream of someday owning a company which provides such services in Dar es Salaam and beyond. She wanted to join PANDA after hearing about the opportunities offered by the programme from other PANDA beneficiaries. Thereafter, she immediately applied and was luckily selected.

During the programme, Magreth learned various key areas which include setting clear goals, plans, and mission, saving, records keeping, and budgeting. She also learnt important skills needed for one to offer catering services such skills were in cookery, services delivery, marketing, and on how to seek and address customers’ feedback for service improvement.

Moreover, the practical trainings she attended exposed Magreth to learn the importance of building networks with likeminded business men and women. This is key in gathering thoughts which are helpful for adaptation and adoption of changing business environment which usually happens. Further, commenting on what she liked about the programme Magret says;

“I really liked the programme the fact that it was arranged in a way which allowed me to attend and manage well other timetables. Attending classes on Saturday for example gave me time to attend classes at the DIT. This was helpful. Also, the practical training offered under the programme was of great help and trainers were excellent for example mama Peridot in practical trainings was superb therefore I learned a lot during the practical sessions and I feel that now I am in a position to realize my long time dream of owning my own catering business’’.

Magreth has been one of the alumni who has become exemplary to other programme participants. This is after she successfully established a profitable catering business. Recently, she was key in PANDA orientation to other participants conducted in January 2020 at Buni hub venue, Kijitonyama in Dar es Salaam during the event she was hired by Her Initiative to offer catering services.

PANDA program has to date been one of the kind interventions by Her Initiatives to support many young women to reach their dreams. This is by supporting them to create their own financial resilience and break down the cycle of poverty surrounding their families and society at large.

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