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We met Bertha today at home just outside Dar es Salaam. We were welcomed into her living room and were introduced to her by our guides from The Gatsby Trust. They have been supporting Bertha for the past year and have provided her with training in order to grow her business. A business she had started before she went to them, but need help to make it grow and expand.
Bertha produces three types of wine, a garlic paste and a flour that is used to make porridge. All of this is done from a purpose built building behind Bertha’s house. A building that she herself has been extending as and when she has the funds to do so. For instance, the Tanzanian Food and Drug Agency said the had to have a separate room for processing the flour. So she built one.
Bertha explained to us that she makes about 600 bottles of wine a year. She is not allowed to make any more than that without approval. But there are three rooms dedicated to its production in her processing plant. One where the wine is stored in barrels for a year and a half, another where the bottling is done, and the last one is where the bottles are stored. Bertha buys the bottles from local suppliers, soaks off the old labels, sterilises them, and then when her wine is ready she bottles it all herself. And then it leaves out of the back door. She was very proud of the fact it comes in one door, and goes out the other.
In fact she was very proud full stop. As well she should be to be honest. From what we could see her business was thriving. To the extent were she is now employing four other people too.
So you see when Comic Relief fund a project they don’t just support one person, they could be supporting a whole community. Indeed Bertha is now training other women in how to be a food producer so they can go on and run their own businesses. And it is this #LastingChange that we are out in Tanzania to witness first hand.
Yet again we have been inspired by these women. Truly inpsired. And to Bertha I can now raise a glass of her very own Hibiscus Wine.
Will you join me? Grab a glass and then sit and watch today’s video