Anne Fertil, affectionately known as Mami Anne, has a smile that would brighten anyone’s day. She greets her colleagues happily every morning, usually with hugs. While she contributes to the entire sandal-making process, she primarily works as a seamstress.
Mami Anne has been working with REBUILD for almost three years, and her salary has enabled her to take care of her many nieces, nephews, and neighbors’ children, who together can add up to a number that often exceeds twelve.
Before joining REBUILD, Mami Anne sold several different products, ranging from soap to cookies to toothbrushes, yet the income was inconsistent. Mami Anne initially joined the team as part of a livelihoods grant from the United Nations to support REBUILD’s development program.
We asked Anne what working with REBUILD means to her, and she described it as transformational. Mami Anne is a cancer survivor and her salary covered the cost of her surgery after her diagnosis. Today, she is healthy, cancer-free, and doing well. Even when we ask Mami Anne how her own life has changed, personally, she will always talk about what she is able to do for others. Her job has empowered her to provide for herself and her family and has provided us with a valued member of our REBUILD family.