Payam stands with an HI staffer in front of her sewing machine in Iraq

A new independence for Payam

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We became Humanity & Inclusion on 1/24/2018


“Before I met Handicap International’s team, my life was completely different,” explains 21-year-old Payam. Payam was born with one kidney and other various medical issues. “I didn’t work and was quite depressed,” she continues.

“I was sitting at home most of the time, thinking that I couldn’t even help my family for anything. Handicap International’s community-based rehabilitation (CBR) project made me believe in myself. It made me smile again and realize that I could do a lot, despite my condition.”

Our goal for the CBR project, which was created in April 2016, is to improve the lives of people with disabilities in Iraq, by improving their access to work, education, and proper rehabilitation care. Handicap International is building capacities by working with civil societies and governments who are actively contributing to achieving this goal. 

For Payam, this meant helping her find work. “She wanted to be a tailor,” explains Truska, one of the project’s volunteers. “We provided her with a sewing machine, so that she could start her own business. Payam is very ambitious and is eager to help her family financially.” 

Handicap International changed Payam’s life tremendously. “Since I started working, I am always positive,” Payam explains. “Sewing keeps me busy and gives meaning to my day-to-day routine. I hope that the organization will be able to help many more people like me.”

Truska adds, “All we want for Payam is to continue on this good path. And we want her to interact with more people, so we put her in touch with Disabled People's Organizations (DPOs) in her area. Our team will continue supporting her, but overall, we’ve very pleased with the progress she’s made.”