An assistance provided by the International Organization for Migration – UN Migration Agency (IOM) to Marjona Zardova, a returned Tajik migrant worker in Russian Federation, helped her to gain financial independence and feel herself as an important member of the society.
Marjona Zardova from Jaloliddin Balkhi district in Tajikistan’s Khatlon Province got her face and body burned at an incident when she was just three years old. She went through several surgeries in Tajikistan, not enough successful, and decided to go to the Russian Federation, earn some money and get treatment. She took a surgery and after was not able to work and keep documents in line with migration requirements. She returned to Tajikistan, but this just made her to self-exile even more.
Mohinisso Shohnazarova, NGO “Akhtari bakht” Director says: “Marjona used to embarrass to go anywhere, considered herself as a useless person. She was avoiding people and would cover all her face and head, so no one to see her injuries”.
“Akhtari bakht” supports IOM in implementation of USAID “Dignity and Rights” in Bokhtar region of Khatlon province. Marjona was chosen as a beneficiary. Taking her extensive experience in food service sector to account, she was given food and beverage making equipment to start a small cafeteria. Now she uses her skills for herself, not for a small salary from others. Now she is a boss, employing other local women too.
She says: “I always believed in myself that if had a chance, I easily could manage this work. Now I have a lot of clients and a lot of delivery orders for weddings”.
The assistance helped Marjona to gain financial independence and psychological confidence. She improved her living conditions, now saves money to continue her treatment, as well as plans to expand the business.
Marjona recites renowned Persian verse: “A true friend is there to hold your hand when you need it most in difficult times. I am sincerely thankful to those, who hold my hand when I needed it most in my difficult times. Now I will do my best to deserve this trust in me and to meet expectations from me. I know now, the life is beautiful, and I will not give up and will enjoy the beauty of life”.
Watch the video about changes in life of Marjona after she received IOM grant.