Poor life among precious stones. Valmira, a girl who works with luxury firms in Tirana

2023-04-07 11:03:06Dhoma e rrëfimit SHKRUAR NGA REDAKSIA VOX
Valmira Isufaj

Entela Resuli

Today, she holds a handful of precious stones in her hand, but Valmira's life history has not been so illustrious.

Valmira Isufaj works in a workshop near the Barricades street, where she glues, embroiders and makes various accessories for shoes, bags or clothes of important fashion brands in the world. All luxury brands, where a bag can cost 15 thousand euros, a pair of shoes as well.

Valmira and her friends are trained to work different parts of these products, for which the responsibility is great and the care must be high.

The girl with golden hands before us, a mother of two children, for whom vicissitudes have not been lacking in life, is our character for today in the " Confession Room" .

Born in Tropoja, when Valmira was a child, her family moved to Kamze and as it usually happens, beyond the difficulties, it was one of the most beautiful periods of her life.

Then, when he was only 18 years old, he met the boy with whom he decided to spend his life, getting married a year later.

Creating a family was also the beginning of challenges. The arrival of the daughter in her life when she was very young increased her responsibilities to start a job and to strengthen the family's economy even more.

"By nature, I have a lot of initiative and I don't say "no" to any job. I started working in a restaurant which mainly organized weddings and large parties. This experience helped me a lot, not only to become skilled in this type of field, but also to understand and learn what I could do in the future, so that I would not continue to be a simple worker, but move to the stage of an entrepreneur" - Valmira tells.

The slide that started it all

Discussing with her husband, in 2011 they decided to build a farm to raise and breed cattle. Thus, in her husband's village, near Kukes, they built a farm with 150 sheep.

To begin with, everything was going very well, the numbers were optimistic, and so were the expectations. Working as a wedding organizer in a restaurant enabled her to secure a market for the meat that would be taken from her cattle.

As soon as she began to believe that she was a real entrepreneur, suddenly, everything collapsed, in the first sense of the word. A landslide submerged the farm and the damage caused was colossal. Of all the living things he could, nothing was left. Since the farm was still in the process of being registered, she and her husband did not receive any compensation from the state.

"It was our fault because we delayed the documents and we didn't even secure the farm, nothing, we didn't even register it. This penalized us and left us with nothing, in the middle of four roads, with millions of Lek in debt.

The amount we had borrowed was too high and with the work we started to do, we could not support ourselves and not pay off our debts".

In 2013, this situation forces Valmira to pack her bags and leave Albania as a family, by bus, towards Germany, on the one hand to avoid the daily pressure of creditors and on the other hand to work and provide income for pay them off.

"We understood very well that in Albania, we would have a very difficult time" , she recalls.

But Germany did not give the couple what they expected. They were unable to obtain asylum status. The nightmare of returning to problems and troubles, pushed them to leave for the Netherlands. This penalized him even more, receiving a sentence not to set foot in Germany for a period of five years.

The return to Albania was painful and difficult. Not only for what awaited Valmira, but also for the fact that unemployment and the inability to cope with life hit her mercilessly in the face.

On the one hand the debts and on the other hand trying to start a normal routine: finding a job, children's school and having a family, above all healthy.

Children are her weak point. She feels guilty for raising her daughter prematurely. Although the girl is only 11 years old, together with her brother they go to school by themselves and even do housework. When Valmira comes home from work, they find the dish ready by the girl.

Apparently, they understood the difficulties of their parents early, sacrificing their childhood in this way.

What the eye sees, the hand does

But the thing that has changed his life and makes him want to wake up every morning is work. The materials that she touches by hand are extremely expensive, starting from precious stones, pearls or even leather which reach thousands of euros.

Valmira had never worked in this profession before. But the desire to learn and the quick ability to learn made him one of the most distinguished employees of this workshop today.

"We work with materials that are very expensive. The final product is also very expensive. I only see them that I don't even dream of using. We work with parts. For example, we can put a strap on a bag very expensive. We work a lot with the details. We glue the precious stones according to the instructions they give us and they are placed either on the shoes or on the bag, pendants. The materials are very good. The work is responsible, but I have taken my hand. I want to to learn, so I also quickly mastered this process" - says Valmira.

Her husband works sometimes in Tirana and sometimes in Montenegro, trying to repay the loan taken a decade ago, and which defined the years after.

But Valmira keeps her head up. What inspires you in this woman is the ability not to fall prey to laziness and demoralization, due to created situations. She is living proof that it is never too late to learn and it is never too late to start over.

Many of the products she makes, she has the opportunity to touch, see them, but she feels it is impossible to ever use them even though she is very young. This is the life of a lady, who starts the day with a morning run towards the city...

*'Confession Room' exclusive column of Vox News.


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