Empowering Refugees: Brah Moustapha’s Inspiring Journey
In the face of adversity, Brah Moustapha, a 52-year-old refugee from Nigeria, has demonstrated exceptional resilience and determination. Forced to leave behind his livelihood and home due to escalating security issues, Brah sought refuge in Diffa, Niger, in 2014. The challenges he encountered were immense, but his unwavering spirit and the support he received from various partners, including HCR, PAM, RESCUE, and local authorities, provided a glimmer of hope.
Upon settling in the spontaneous site of Gachagar, Brah initially engaged in the sale of condiments to support his family. However, this endeavor proved unsustainable due to limited clients and seasonal product availability. The burden of providing for his family and the inability to save weighed heavily on him, especially after partner organizations withdrew their support.
In March 2023, Brah’s life took a turn for the better with the arrival of RET Germany at the Gachagar site. The organization introduced a project focused on livelihood improvement and economic inclusion for refugees and displaced individuals in the Diffa region. Brah was identified as a program participant for the Income-Generating Activity (AGR) program, marking the beginning of a transformative journey.
Under RET’s guidance, Brah and fellow participants formed the ‘Zaman Lafiya’ AGR group, comprising 10 members. With technical support and training on business management, they set up a collective micro-project centered around small livestock farming. RET’s funding of 500,000FCFA enabled the purchase of 10 sheep, which were distributed among the group members for care and maintenance over three months.
Brah also received training in the AVEC approach, equipping him with the skills to save money, access loans, and finance supplementary activities. Leveraging these resources, Brah invested in basic embroidery equipment, rekindling his passion for tailoring. His newfound independence allowed him to support his family’s essential needs, while saving 100 Naira weekly within his AVEC group, ‘Amana’.
Brah’s story is a testament to the transformative power of empowerment and resilience. His advice to fellow refugees underscores the importance of fostering peace and mutual understanding within host communities, strengthening the bonds that connect us all.
Brah extended his heartfelt gratitude to RET and its partner, UNHCR, for the support that has redefined his journey towards self-sufficiency and independence. His story serves as an inspiration to us all, reminding us that with the right opportunities and support, individuals can overcome even the most daunting challenges.