News

Great-Grandma Fatima

24 September 2019

Maria de Fátima Francisco is 60 years old and has 3 children. She lost her husband when she was still young. Very early in her life, her mother taught her how to make flower pots. 


Fatima´s clay pots ©UNFPA Moçambique/Alexandre Muianga

On the day Cyclone Idai struck she was at home with her children. When she and her kids suddenly saw the place flooded, they ran to seek higher ground. The water kept rising. People had to be rescued by helicopter and were taken to the Samora Machel Accommodation Center in Beira. During the rescue missions, Maria was separated from her children and spent three months without seeing them.

Maria now teaches the younger women at the center how to make clay pots during her free time.


Some of Fatima´s apprentices ©UNFPA Moçambique/Alexandre Muianga

Her greatest dream is to have a house again. “I can not continue to live the sorrow of receiving friends, relatives, and neighbors in a tent instead of a proper house.”