By Mushtaq Bhat

TRAL South Kashmir ,May, 18, : Despite hurdles, a young girl from South Kashmir’s Tral hamlet is inspiring others to move forward in life by her success story. Aafu Reshi, 25, is running her entrepreneurial unit ‘Fashion Shades’ and is providing employment to over a dozen people there.
Aafu upon completing her degree went for a fashion designing course that had already conquered her thoughts. “We used to design new clothes for ourselves and that fascinated our friends and neighbours. Thus began our journey and we fathomed our ability to take a step forward in this field.”
But her journey was not smooth. She encountered many obstacles in her endeavour to achieve her goal but ultimately with hardwork and dedication took her business to new heights and earned laurels and respect from a cross section of society.
The idea of ‘Fashion Shades’ prospered in 2016, however, the disturbances made it topsy-turvy. But, next year she again infused new life in her unit. “Initially we had a room in our house for cutting and stitching clothes,” Aafu said.
“Then we moved to have our own store where we could cater to a large number of prospective customers.”
However, she said, people reacted to her entrepreneurial move “differently”. “I didn’t let that dampen my spirits and today people from various parts of South Kashmir visit my store.
“But more important thing is we are 15 girls working at the unit and they all feel empowered due to this venture.”
The ‘Fashion Shades’ is now available in two sections, one with a boutique and the other with women’s accessories.
During the height of COVID-19 pandemic Aafu turned her business unit into a philanthropy centre. “When I saw doctors discharging their work in the most difficult circumstance, I wondered why we shouldn’t give them something back.
“We started making Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kits for doctors and masks and distributed them free of cost,” she added.
Her initiative was widely appreciated by people all over the district. “Our health workers were in the forefront bearing all the brunt of the difficult situation. We took it as an obligation to do something for them and contribute towards society,” she added.

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