Bhim Roka Magar, 30, runs a grocery shop. His wife Bina helps him in bringing stuff from the market. The husband heads indoor activities with very limited mobility and the wife completely handles outdoor activities. She goes out in the market, brings groceries and other essential items based on the customers' demand. This is something different in our patriarchal society where females are bound in household chores.
They live in Kailali, one of the rural parts of Nepal with their two sons aged eight and two years. His first child attends private school of the village and he hopes to admit his second child to the school after completing three years. The family is self-reliant to fulfill their basic necessities. However, life was different a few years ago.
“I fell from the tree while cutting grass a few years back. I broke my leg. I was hospitalized for a month, however, after this incident, I lost my mobility. You couldn’t imagine our life after this incident,” remembers Bhim.
Bhim and his family, with no subsistence, moved to Bina’s parental home for a promising future. However, there was no end to their struggle with even greater challenges waiting for them. After staying for a few years, they returned to their home.
Upon their arrival, both the husband and wife decided to start a fresh meat shop and brought chickens from the poultry. They started to sell meat. However, this was not sufficient to survive for the family of three.
“It is a rural village where people often don’t buy meat so it was difficult for us to survive with the income. My wife used to work as a daily wage laborer in the road construction sites. She also had to arrange chickens so that I could sit in one place, cut and sell the fresh meat. We struggled hard to feed our first child. Our life was miserable,” shares Bhim.
Later, they received support from SOS Children’s Village Dhangadhi through Family Strengthening programme. With the support received, they added a grocery shop cum hotel that served snacks and continued the butcher shop.
“Life is full of wonders. We fought with many hurdles in our life. Once, my family was almost on the verge of separation. I was a son-in-law living in my wife’s parental home with my child which is unusual in our society. My wife used to move to many places to earn money. We never thought one day we would have our own shop and we would be able to provide nutritious food to our children. After receiving support from SOS, our life changed,” says Bhim.
Bhim and his family received livelihood support to start the shop in the village in 2018. In addition to this, his first child received educational support for almost three years. Within the short span of time, because of their hard work, they have successfully exited from the programme and are living their life independently.
“Life is full of struggle and we have to continue doing hard work. I am grateful that our path crossed with SOS, and we could dream to fulfill our dream. I am happy that with the income, we were able to buy a small plot of land and also constructed two rooms’ home. We have been using one room for the shop and next for shelter. Now, I dreamt of providing a bright future to my sons,” says Bhim.