BY ACHOR ABIMAJE, Jos
A LIFE IN BRIEF
Zainab Ibrahimi is a 29-year-old woman, an indigene of Ogbomosho local government area of Oyo State. She attended Township Primary and Secondary Schools, all in Jos North local government area. She owns a fashion designing outfit in Delimi area of Jos North. She is the 5th of 9 children.
My name is Zainab Ibrahim. Tailoring is my profession. I was born December 18, 1988, I am the 5th of the nine children of the family of Mr Ibrahim Yusuf and late Mrs Ramat Abdulsalam. I am a native of Ogbomosho, Oyo State.
I obtained my First School Leaving Certificate from Township Primary School, Jos-North local government, Plateau State and had my secondary education at the same school.
HOW IT ALL STARTED
It all started when my beloved mother, who was everything to me, died. I dropped out of Secondary School at SS1, because I felt that the world had come to an end for me. I couldn’t think of continuing my education anymore and I lost any desire to go to school.
When I was thinking on what do with my life, I chose tailoring, because of the passion I have for it and, though my father was not in support of my choice and insisted that I return to school, I used the last money I saved from what little I was getting – it came to N5, 000 – to register as an apprentice with my boss, Dauda, for three years.
At the end of the third year, when I graduated, my uncle bought me a machine to begin sewing at home. After sometime, though, my elder sister advised me to get a shop. I did and that is where I am today.
What has brought me this far is that I never put my trust in anyone, but on God. Many years ago, I was an apprentice learning under somebody but, today, to the glory of God, I am my own boss. Presently, I have nine apprentices learning from me and, having achieved what I want, I will return to school, just to get the knowledge and not for want of a better job.
It all started out with sadness, but today, with God’s help and determination, He has taken me somewhere.
It is not easy being where I am now, my success is the result of determination and love for the work.
I love my work. I don’t have anything to regret about the choice I made at all. Tailoring is one of the things I do which give me joy and happiness.
Though I have achieved a lot in this profession, my dream is to achieve something more; one which I can proudly point to when I become old.
I love dancing and playing a lot.
My first mentor is my late mother, Mrs Ramat Ibrahim. I learnt everything from her. The second person is my elder brother, Ismail Ibrahim, for his simplicity.
When I think of the way it all began, it makes me come close to tears. I can never forget that day when I made the decision.
They say “the customer is always right,” but I feel embarrassed when they insult me. Another thing that embarrasses me is when an apprentice is not doing so well or learning as he or she should.
My advice to young people out there is for them to be determined, remain focused, be patient and focus on whatever they desire to achieve in life, as this has aided me a lot to be where I am today.