CREATE! has changed my life. Years ago I stayed at home with nothing to do because it was difficult for me to find a job. But now, with CREATE!’s help, I’m working in the garden with other women and we are all earning money.”

Seynabou Diouf, 40, is a dynamic member of Gagnick Mack’s agricultural cooperative. Over the past year, Seynabou has learned how to grow vegetables and fruit. She is proud to work in the garden with her neighbors and says, “the skills and knowledge in vegetable cultivation that I have gained from CREATE!’s field technicians are very important to me.” She adds, “the technicians are teaching us techniques that will serve us forever.”

Our agricultural technicians recently helped cooperative members in Gagnick Mack set up their first Voluntary Savings and Lending Associations (VSLAs). Seynabou appreciates this training. She says, “With the VSLA we are able to save our money and make a loan when we need it. VSLAs serve as banks for our community. Through VSLA, women are now able to work together to help each other meet our needs.”

Tomato Harvest in Gagnick Mack

In February, cooperative members in Gagnick Mack, including Seynabou, harvested tomatoes from their garden site.