Ebou Cham

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“We must believe in ourselves to achieve our goals.”
Ebou Cham
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I returned to The Gambia in August 2018. When I came home, I started a new business here in Banjul. We sell fabrics for all kinds of ceremonies and for all genders. The business was doing exceptionally well before the pandemic started. We used to make sales double the amount we make today. The environment was friendly and market was good. Things changed in 2020 amidst COVID-19. We hardly see our customers come in, because they say there is no money. We have seven employees to whom we have to pay salaries and, despite the difficulties we are going through, we cannot let them go. We have to maintain the number of employees so that they cannot be laid off. Less business, less finances. Despite the difficult moments, we are working hard and meeting the expectations of our customers. We are on a road to recovery, as people are now managing to live with the virus and keep up with the pandemic. Sales will hopefully be back at it was. We cannot allow COVID-19 to ruin our business. We must continue striving to achieve. I wish to set-up my own business instead of the joint one I am running now. This is something that I have been planning to achieve for months, and I will attend a training on business entrepreneurship so I will know how to run a business and take care of my finances. The backway is not the solution to achieve our dreams. We all have our luck written somewhere for us. We must believe in ourselves to achieve our goals. The backway is a painful and devastating journey which involves both winning and losing. However, the risks involved overshadow the win. If I was given a large sum of money to take the backway, I would never consider it again. I would rather take the regular route than the irregular journey. I thank God for my life and for my textile business that is growing every day. Ebou’s reintegration assistance was supported by the European Union's Emergency Trust Fund for Africa through the EU-IOM Joint Initiative for Migrant Protection and Reintegration.


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