In search of a better life, Mahmuda was forced to move away from her village and family. Unfortunately, she found herself in an abusive relationship with her husband, leading to their separation. Her husband took custody of their 10-year-old son without her consent, causing Mahmuda immense emotional distress, leading to depression. During this time, she had no emotional or mental support, leaving her feeling lost and alone.
She ended up working in a ready-made garments factory in Bangladesh. Through the British Asian Trust’s programme with local partner, Mahmuda is now training as a mental health para-counsellor to help other women facing mental distress and issues. She is learning about self-care and stress management techniques to help other people in similar circumstances. She can now also access advanced mental health counselling if she faces mental health issues in the future.
Mahmuda shared: "I didn’t have the support I needed when I was depressed. It was one of the darkest times of my life. Now I want to help other women and support them during their times of mental distress."
The British Asian Trust and their partner SAJIDA Foundation are providing much-needed mental health support to ready-made garment workers in factories in Bangladesh who have limited access to mental health resources. With this support, Mahmuda and her colleagues can receive the help they need to overcome their mental health challenges and lead happier, healthier lives.