47 year old Fareeda Isaac is a social entrepreneur from Puducherry. As a dynamic social worker, Fareeda began her journey in 2005 when she created a Self Help Group in Orleanpet region of Puducherry, followed by 2 new Self Help Groups. Once every month she would organise a meeting with each Self Help Group within her house and give women training on how to save money effectively and also educate them about micro-finance. The number rose and by 2009, Fareeda was working with over 100 SHGs in and around Puducherry. Besides providing financial training, Fareeda started organising training sessions on handmade goods such as soap-making, mat weaving, toys, fashion accessories and recycling waste cloth by stitching bags out of it. The SHG got support from the government too, giving them an opportunity to showcase their handcrafted products at exhibitions which were conducted across the country. In addition to leading Self Help Groups, Fareeda also took the initiative In 2007 of starting a children’s parliament in which students from standard 5 to 7 participated and discussed social issues such as population and pollution. This was an effort to help children become responsible citizens for the future.
Fareeda’s own enterprise, ‘Ammi’s Home Made Products’ was launched in 2014. From squashes and jams to pickles, a bounty of products is prepared in a small establishment by Fareeda. For assistance, she has employed two women from underprivileged background so as to give them a fair opportunity to earn and be financially independent. She now wants to take her business online and reach out to customers at a wider scale. Fareeda wants to gain thorough knowledge of e-Commerce to promote and sell her products online. Although she is not active in any SHG anymore, she still meets her old comrades on special occasions and functions. She would go out of her way to help any woman in distress.
Fareeda believes that a woman can fly a plane or drive a lorry. With will-power and passion, no strength could stop a woman from fulfilling get dreams and aspirations.