Against all odds – a story of resilience and perseverance

April 28th, 2020

Liswaniso is from Kaoma, a small town in Western Zambia and was brought up by his single parent mum. He attended the local school until one day his mum fell ill.

I went up to Grade 7 but the only person supporting me was my mother. She unfortunately got sick, but I still managed to take my exams and pass. But I couldn’t go any further after that because there was no one to support me, because my mother then died.

When he was young, Liswaniso aspired “… to be a soldier or doctor”, but his mother’s death brought on circumstances beyond his control. He was a survivor, though, with a practical sense, doing mostly doing odd jobs, building latrines and farm work.

As his talents developed, he began helping to build very basic wells:

We weren’t doing wells with protective rings, just packing them with mud and we wouldn’t line them, so they were unprotected.

He worked hard until he discovered Village Water Zambia was offering enterprise training and borehole drilling equipment to willing self-starters – a Village Water funded initiative to deliver water to communities through investing in entrepreneurs.

Liswaniso successfully completed his training, and 25 jobs for households in his district, and – as part of the deal – Village Water Zambia handed over the drilling tool kit.

Liswaniso now manages his own business – Mule Enterprise

My life has improved. Since the well construction training and jobs, I’ve been able to buy two plots of land, which I couldn’t have done before. I can get clothes for my children, send them to school and buy food. And the best thing is the people we help.

And, despite having dropped out of school at an early age he has now been able to pay for his children’s education.