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Paruima Women Development Group, Region 7

Paruima Women Development Group, Region 7 was initiated to provide employment especially for women who were jobless. SIMAP then intervened to assist with facilities such as sewing machines and materials. The group started with 42 women as a sewing group on September 27, 1999. A review of the projects conducted by SIMAP had found this project to be a success.

This organisation was the first of its kind to support women. It started as a sewing group with some training provided initially. This group provided semi-employment. Its current membership is 10 males and 21 females. Travelling to other communities is expensive since there are approximately 2-40 miles apart. However, the members also sew clothes for persons in the neighbouring villages of Waramadong and Kamarang.
The association plans to expand to handicraft activities, so that members can be involved in both sewing and craft making.

There has been much interest by some of the women to be involved in craft making. The products include hammocks, wood carvings, mukru craft, nibbi craft, wooden paddles, graters, sifters, baby slings, beaded work, sewing/embroidery.


Mrs. Yvonne Andries

Paruima Village, Upper Mazaruni, Region 7, Guyana
c/o Ministry of  Amerindian Affairs



Role in social activities:

The members contribute to the School Feeding Programme by providing hand towels. The Group support the ‘village work’ , for example, weeding and cleaning. The women have been very active in village work and serve as the main sponsors by providing breakfast etc. They are perceived to be the main mobilisers of village work. The members are represented at the quarterly village meeting where they present their work programme and report on progress.

The aim of the group was to train women in sewing thereby enabling them to work and earn a small income. They sew uniforms for the children who are all well unformed. The benefits are shared by paying for labour costs among the group of women depending on the volume of work per each member. The group has benefited since it provides a holding base for women to work together.


Decisions are made at the executive meetings. The group report to the Village Council and the Village Council will submit a general report on their activities to the Ministry of Amerindian Affairs.

Supporting Organisations:

The only external support that the group has received since being formed was two sewing machines. Recently, they received two additional sewing machines (Zig zag) from the Ministry of Amerindian Affairs. They have also received assistance from a staff member of the Ministry of Sports, youth and Culture by promoting craft sales. The Village Council has recently received funding from GMPP for a school feeding programme and an eating house.

Key Message:
“The sale of our products can enhance our livelihood by creating employment for us to be economically self sufficient”. The natural resources would become useful for us to use and earn a livelihood.

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