Laxmi's* mother earned the equivalent of $1 per day as a field worker. Her father left the family when she was small. Laxmi and her younger sister went to school until they could no longer afford to pay tuition. She left her village and went to the city to look for employment. First, she worked at an orphanage going door to door raising money. After six months she hadn't earned very much, and the orphanage director fired her. Without even the change to catch a bus home to her village, she found herself completely destitute. Overcome, she began to cry on the side of the road. A young man approached her, asked about her story, and promised to help. He led her to a brothel and sold her. Forced to have sex with many men every night, her life became a living hell. After a year, the police raided the brothel. She was rescued and placed in the protective custody of a home.
Now she works at Ruhamah Designs and is embracing all the opportunities given her. Intelligent and better educated than most rescued girls, Laxmi absorbs everything taught to her with ease. Versatile on the computer and with a camera, she not only designs jewelry, but photographs it, documents it, and uploads it to various online sites. Adept at sourcing supplies and teaching other girls, Laxmi is growing in leadership, self-reliance, and in the knowledge of all the components of running a good business.
*name changed to protect identity