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Your location>Home>Publications>PeaceWays>Fall 2012

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Overcoming the Violence of Poverty
Ellie Yusuf-Ali, intern for Bududa Learning Center, Uganda

Africans often comment that not only does poverty itself increase violence as the poor attempt to stay alive, but that poverty itself is violence because it robs people, particularly children, of their ability to live a healthy, useful life.

Up steps of torn sandbags and broken wood, is the entrance to Alice Khabele’s home; an open rusty door, concealed by torn plastic and rags. Past the entrance is the home itself, cluttered with pots and pans, silver basins, empty plastic bottles, and an unattended pot of leftover maize in a corner. The walls of crumbling of brick and cement, barely covered by curtains, have no windows, leaving half of her home in darkness even during the days.
“We are suffering in this one bed-room. All of us live here,” says Alice. Her home is a rented room that Alice and her four children live in. To Alice, this home has been a burden for many years. It has been a sign of what her life has lacked, and a new home has been a dream of hers to adequately shelter herself and her children.

“I want to build a house for my family. It is a hurdle for us because buying a land and constructing a house are very expensive.”

When Alice’s husband passed away, she became the sole source of income for her family, quickly finding herself in financial trouble. Alice explained that this is now one of her greatest problems and led her to Women's Microfinance Bududa (WMB), which became a source of hope for a steady income to provide education for her children, to feed her family, and to build a new home.

With a firm belief in the Microfinance program, Alice is running a clothing business, which she believes has “helped her very much.” Alice is striving to purchase a new home, fulfilling a longtime dream; provide clothing, food, and education for her children, so that she can ensure the best future for them.