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Surbir, 33, dreamed of providing for his family so they could break free from poverty in Nepal, but his disability held him back. Through our Futuremakers project, we helped Surbir start his business and give his children a better start.

Surbir is wearing a yellow coat and is standing in front of some shelves

15 years ago, during the public revolution in Nepal, Surbir lost sight in one eye. That day, his life as he knew it changed forever. Unable to work, he and his family had been trying their best to survive on his social security allowance and his wife’s earnings from daily labour work alone. However, this was barely enough to cover the basics.

Battling the trauma of losing his eyesight and the heartache of seeing their two daughters go hungry, Surbir and his wife feared there was no way out.

At 10 and 13, Surbir’s daughters were still in school, and he dreamed of them making it out of the poverty cycle they were trapped in. He wanted nothing more than to give them the childhood they deserved so they could pursue their dreams in the future, but this seemed completely out of reach.

Thousands of people with disabilities in Nepal are unable to work, meaning their families struggle to survive. With your support, we can help Surbir and many others in similar situations earn a living so they and their families can thrive.

How we helped

Subir joined a self-help group for people in similar circumstances. He gained a lot of support and advice from the group, eventually becoming its vice chair so he can provide a strong voice for those in need.

Through these meetings, Surbir heard about our Futuremakers project, delivered by CBM and our local partner, DECN. This initiative empowers young people with disabilities to start their own businesses through support, training, and providing resources. Refusing to let his disability hold him back, Surbir joined the project which gave him the confidence and training to open up his snack shop and earn a living for his family.

Surbir sitting in his shop.

“Through the Futuremakers project, I participated in business training, financial literacy training and record keeping, and I was supported to start this snack shop.”

Today, Surbir and his wife serve up snacks and small lunches to their community. They find fulfilment in their work and dream of expanding their business to secure a stable future for their family.

Surbir with his wife sitting in the shop.

“I would like to thank all the people who provided support through this project. My main aim for the future is to use the income from this business to educate my daughters. I want to see them get good jobs.”

Without the help of our supporters, Surbir would have still been stuck in the poverty cycle, fighting for his family to survive. Now, he is happily opening his shop every day to provide locals with delicious snacks and leading a self-help group to help others in a similar situation..

How you can help

Your support can help change more lives like Surbir’s, giving them a better chance of supporting their families and having a brighter future.  

This project is funded by the Standard Chartered Foundation and delivered by CBM and DECN in partnership with the Standard Chartered Foundation. It is part of Futuremakers by Standard Chartered, a global initiative to tackle inequality by promoting economic inclusion for disadvantaged young people.

  • Black text reads: Funded by Standard Chartered Foundation
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All photos ©CBM UK/Kishor

Surbir sitting in his shop.