Jyotirmoy’s journey to entrepreneurship and financial security in Bangladesh

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

As a child, Jyotirmoy* watched his parents struggle to meet their basic needs. His father worked as a blacksmith, while his mother dedicated herself to managing their household. Going to school was a luxury for Jyotirmoy; his education came to a halt after eighth grade due to the family's financial limitations.  


"It was tough for me and my family. Not only me, but my little brother's future was also uncertain."


Bangladesh is one of the youngest countries in the world, having declared independence from Pakistan in 1971. According to the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics:


  • 25% of the country’s population is in the 15-29 age group;  


  • the current youth population is 45.9 million;  


  • youth unemployment is 8.7%; and 


  • university graduates have the highest unemployment rate among youth. 


Jyotirmoy standing in front of his welding workshop.

In 2018, things started to change when Jyotirmoy's family participated in the Family Strengthening Program of SOS Children's Villages Bangladesh. Jyotirmoy enrolled in a one-year course on light engines at the SOS Vocational Training Centre in Chattogram and his younger brother returned to school. Jyotirmoy worked hard and finished his training successfully. In 2020, he enrolled in a welding course and became proficient in his trade under the instructors‘ guidance and encouragement from SOS Children’s Villages staff. 


After gaining extensive knowledge and experience, in 2021 Jyotirmoy decided to take a bold step and establish a welding workshop. But this coincided with the COVID-19 pandemic which slowed everything down. In response to the pandemic, SOS Children’s Villages Bangladesh provided financial assistance to the families participating in the Family Strengthening Program. Jyotirmoy’s family invested a portion of these funds into launching his workshop. Jyotirmoy started with a few tools and a dream of becoming a successful businessman. He worked diligently and his customer base increased.  


Today, Jyotirmoy is earning enough to support his family. His entrepreneurial spirit has transformed his life and created employment opportunities for others. He currently has four employees.  


Besides the educational and financial support, the workshops provided by SOS Children’s Villages on entrepreneurship, social awareness and finances help ambitious young people like Jyotirmoy to be successful.  


Meanwhile, his younger brother continues his studies with the support of SOS Children’s Villages, covering the expenses for his education: school fees, coaching fees, reference books, exercise books, mid-day meals, school uniform, and more.  


SOS Children’s Villages Bangladesh created a holistic family development plan to enhance the family's financial stability. As part of this initiative, Jyotirmoy's mother enrolled in a six-month sewing course at the SOS Children’s Villages Skills Training Centre. After completing the training, she was provided with a sewing machine. With this support, she now contributes to the family's income and empowers herself. 


Jyotirmoy shares his feelings: 


"For someone like me, who grew up in poverty, having my own business felt like a dream. But with determination and the right skills, that dream came true. I would have never been able to take this chance on me by investing money in my own business. I did it because I felt encouraged to do it in the Family Strengthening and Youth Skills programs. I encourage others to trust that their hard work will pay off too.“


Learning different skills can help today’s youth to maximize their potential and achieve career goals. Finding a job in this competitive world can be challenging without well-developed skillsets. In this regard, vocational skills can help individuals become proficient in a trade or profession, leading them to start a business and create jobs for others.  


*Name changed to protect privacy. 

Canadians wishing to help vulnerable children are encouraged to sponsor a child, sponsor an SOS Village or make a one-time donation. Your support will change the lives of orphaned, abandoned and other vulnerable children. Please help today.