Anita Mongshi, like many members of the Himalayan Institute Cameroon (HIC) staff, has benefited greatly from the vocational training opportunities granted by HIC. A successful graduate of both the Sacred Link Jewelry and Total Health internship programs, she uses her skills to provide for and to treat the health problems of her three children.

Anita grew up in Sabongari, a hot dry community in Cameroon’s Northwest Province. There she met and married her husband, a traveling veterinarian, and the couple moved to his hometown of Kumbo.

While raising her children, she worked a variety of part-time jobs, teaching computer software, performing PC repairs, and working as a secretary for a small company. In early 2007, Anita began to hear vague rumors about a new organization that was coming to settle in Kumbo. “I heard they were planning to change the area, to train and employ people, and to provide health services, and that they were collecting resumes,” she remembers. “I was very curious to see what was really going on.” She arrived at Himalayan Institute Cameroon and interviewed to be a part of the Sacred Link Jewelry vocational training program. Three days later, she received a call telling her she was accepted.

Among the jewelry students, Anita excelled. Upon completion of the program she was selected to become production coordinator, a role in which she supervised other technicians while designing 40 unique pieces of jewelry herself. The launching of the Total Health training course in April 2008 excited Anita, who had always had an interest in anatomy. She applied and received a scholarship from the HIC to participate.

Now, Anita acts as program leader and consultant of HIC’s Total Health Center. She sees patients, suggests lifestyle changes and alternative remedies, and manages the books for the center. On occasion, you can find her producing jewelry in her white Total Health Center lab coat.

At work, Anita has taken advantage of every opportunity to improve herself. She says, “At the Himalayan Institute, we have so much on-the-job training. With other employers they already expect a certain level of experience that you will maintain. Here you are learning on the job every day.”

And if not from those around her, then on her own. In between seeing patients, Anita spends her time studying chemistry and biology. “My biggest goal,” she says, “is to continue my education in the domain of health. I’m studying now in hopes of taking the entrance exams for university. If all goes well I will succeed.”

Anita with three-year-old daughter Rashida

Anita with three-year-old daughter Rashida