Motunrayo Monsurat, 47 became crippled mysteriously at 7years. Born into a poor family in Oro Ago community in Kwara state, her parents resorted to alternative medicine to cure her of this sudden affliction. However, the inability of traditional and even orthodox medicine to proffer solutions to her predicament led to a delay in enrolling her for school.
Unlike her counterparts, Motunrayo only got a shot at attending primary school at a well-advanced age of 13 because the disability also affected her learning capability. Understanding that she was limited academically, her resilient spirit drove her to enroll for tailoring classes. She began to take academic classes in the morning and tailoring classes in the evening. By the time she was done with primary school, Motunrayo had learnt completely how to sew. Few years later, she got married and was blessed with six children. Yet the quality of her life did not improve as the disability posed a major challenge in the pursuit of her dreams.
However, in 2018 as part of activities aimed at enabling disadvantaged populations to drive sustainable development in 5 states including Kwara State, The Leprosy Mission Nigeria carried out an intervention to reduce poverty among self-help group members. The targeted vulnerable groups included persons affected by leprosy, persons with disabilities, and women. Fortunately, Motunrayo was one of the beneficiaries of a vocational training intervention carried out in Oro Ago and based on the general recommendation of the local arm of the Joint Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD) she was one of the recipients of Start-Up Materials to commence soap production.
Today, Motunrayo combines tailoring and soap making and both businesses have become highly profitable. She comfortably makes over N10, 000 monthly as profit from both trades. In addition to that, she has also introduced Nylon production, which generates about N6, 000 monthly. All these has contributed to her consistency in the payment of her monthly thrift to the community bank which has raised her credit limit from N120,000 — N200,000. Surprisingly too, she has begun a building project of her own. This support from TLMN has improved her life and that of her family. Motunrayo is extremely grateful to TLM- Nigeria and its partners for positively affecting her life.