Tilkumari's tailor made success story

PYUTHAN - It has been just six years since Tilkumari Khadka of Khalanga, Pyuthan started her tailoring enterprise with the help of Micro Enterprise Development Programme (MEDEP) – a UNDP and Government of Nepal project generously funded by the Australian Government. But in this short period, the enterprise has brought about a sea change in her life. A restless job-seeker from a poor family background has turned into a successful entrepreneur and a leader.

Khadka started a tailoring shop at a rented hut after receiving entrepreneurship and skills training from MEDEP in 2008. From day one, her business started growing. With pride in her eyes, Khadka says, "I was able to make Nrs. 5,600 in the very first month."

In less than a year, Khadka was able to purchase a patch of land in Khalanga, the district headquarters of Pyuthan.  Khadka recalls the days of her hardwork, "I started my business at a rented hut in the same location. Soon, my confidence grew and I purchased this land with the savings and some loans. Later, I was able to build this house."

Now she houses her enterprise in the three-storey building employing one full time and five part-time staff. She also operates a training centre and frequently travels to neighboring districts to train fellow women. The entrepreneurship continues to expand as she adds one sewing machine every year - offering a tailor made story for other women thinking of starting similar enterprise.

 She is an exemplary entrepreneur and is recently chosen for a second term to lead District Micro Entrepreneurs Groups Association (DMEGA) which represents about 2,000 Micro Entrepreneurs in Pyuthan.