This time of the year and with the arrival of the rainy season, most of our beneficiaries in Koh Preah commune have been busy with their rice farming. Thus, during our 3- day trip (2 to 4 July) to assess the needs for repairing bio-digesters, we have noticed that some villages were rather quieter than usual. Meeting with our CBO members who have bio-digesters, we found that 42 out of the 55 households are having problems with the spare parts of the systems. Some have problems with cookers while others have problems with lamps. Five of them have not been able to use their bio-digesters for almost two years due to two problems: (1) the broken parts of the system such as tube, lamps, tab, and cookers which are not available in Cambodia and (2): the lack of animal manure to produce bio-gas when their livestock kept dying especially during hot season.
With bio-digester, Ms. Vibol had been living very conveniently for 8 months before its spare parts were broken, because she did not need to go to the forest to collect fuel wood for daily cooking and boiling water. The tube connected from the bio-digester to the cooker was broken because of storms and heavy rain. Her cooker is rusty and cannot function because it has not been used for almost two years. The lamp using bio-gas for lighting her home does not work. She has asked CRDT to repair these spare parts, which are not available in her community.
Ms. Vannara reported that her chickens and ducks kept dying in hot season during March and April. At the beginning, she raised 50 chickens and 15 ducks. Four months later, her livestock grew bigger and almost ready for sale. Unfortunately, 35 chickens died during 7 days and all ducks died in a day. She felt very hopeless and decided to postpone raising chickens and ducks since then. She would like CRDT to help provide new techniques for raising livestock that adapts to climate change, especially to protect her chickens and ducks during the season when diseases breakout.
In response to the first problem, with fund raised from GlobalGiving donors, CRDT has planned in late August 2014 to help these families by replacing the broken spare parts and involving them in the repairing process, so that later they will be able to repair the bio-digester themselves as well as help other villagers to repair theirs. The cost of the new spare parts were agreed among the villagers that half will be covered by the fund from Global Giving and the other half will be settled by the families themselves.
To address the challenge in raising livestock as well as the lack of animal manure for producing bio-gas, we have planned to provide them with trainings on livestock raising and disease preventive methods adapted to climate change. Families which do animal raising are confronted by the continuous death of their livestock due to the fact that climate change becomes noticeable in their localities causing animals being prone to diseases. If a pig dies, it is a big loss for the family. To avoid such loss, some villagers decided to reduce or stop raising such animals as pigs, chickens, and ducks.
We estimated a needed budget of around USD 4,340 (USD 840 for half of the cost for bio-digesters repair plus USD 3,500 to provide trainings on livestock raising for 319 families). The fund of USD 1,500 raised over the last semester would be used to address the problem of bio-digesters first. Your recurring donation is really necessary and your support could have even more impact if you decide to donate to CRDT on Global Giving matching day on July 16th from 9 am to 11:59 pm (time in New York) or July 16th from 3 pm to July 17th at 6: 00 am (time in Europe). Your donation will be matched at 50% which will tremendously help CRDT and this project.
CRDT would like to take this opportunity to thank Charissa, GlobalGiving volunteer, for visiting our project last May and giving a lot of helpful suggestions.
Finally, thank you to all donors for your kindness to our Cambodian rural families.
This progress report highlights project progress within the period January 27 to April 20, 2014 and the case study of Mrs.Channy and access to credit for her business.
Activities and Achievements
Within this reporting period, the Cambodian Rural Development Team (CRDT)supported partially by the funds raised from Global Giving Donors, continued to empower rural women through training sessions, coaching and monitoring them in business skills in Sre Krasaing village, Sre Krasaing commune, Siembok district.
CRDT delivered a training course on basic business skills for nine women in order for them to feel confident in doing business. We also followed them up afterwards.CRDT already supports the Savings Group in Sre Krasaing, which has increased its total members’ savings by 320,000 Riel (USD 80)over the last three months. Currently, the saved money of the Group reaches the amount of 1,965,300 Riel (USD 491). From this, 1,900,000 Riel (USD 475) was lent to women as capital for starting and expanding businesses such as pig raising, cassava plantation and grocery selling.
As an example, Mrs. Channy lives in Sre Krasaing village. Her family relies on rice production, cassava plantation, pig raising, and the production of local wine. She became a member of the Savings Group in 2013. She has now borrowed 140,000 Riel from the Savings Group to buy piglets. She said “I am happy. I have access to credit from our Savings Group to begin raising pigs. I have to say thank you to CRDT and the donors of CRDT projects for supporting me and other rural households”.
November 2013 to January 2014
This report highlights the project progress, challenges, and additional needs. The report also includes the case of Ms. Vannara and her livelihood improvement by joining in a micro local enterprise of fish sauce production with her 5 neighbors.
Activities, Achievements, and Next work plan
Since November 2013, with funding support from Global Giving donors, Cambodian Rural Development Team (CRDT) started to implement this new project by working with 375 women in Sre Krasaing, Siem Bok and Koh Sralay communes in Siem Bok district to strengthen their capacities in livelihood development. The majority of the women are the members of the Livelihood Community Based Organizations (CBOs) formed and facilitated by CRDT since 2008. By working with CRDT, the groups were trained and coached on agriculture techniques for growing rice and vegetable, raising pig and chicken, and starting group saving. Then, small grants were released to support the women to start up their livelihood activities. This additional assistance from Global Giving offered these women opportunities to expand their livelihood activities after CRDT phased out its initial project ending in late 2012.
During this reporting period, CRDT focused on the Fish Sauce Women Association comprising of 5 women. Follow up meeting with the Chief of the association gave the insights into the facing needs that their enterprise lacks (1) the techniques for storing the cooked fish sauce to avoid fungi development after a desired period of 1 year, (2) the containers with proper tabs for bottling fish sauce, (3) the kitchen to maintain high level of hygiene in production, (4) packaging technique and materials, and (5) the capital to enlarge the production scale to generate more income.
So far, the project raised USD 555 from 10 global giving donors. In the next period, CRDT will try to optimize the use of this fund together with the communities’ own fund from saving to tackle the above needs of the fish sauce women association. However, more funding is really needed so that the rest of the needs could be met effectively and the group will be fully empowered to lead themselves toward a sustainable and profitable fish sauce enterprise.
Let’s hear from the Chief of the group, Ms. Vannara, aged 45, chief of the association. “Our fish sauce production is now more well know in the local markets, and in 2013 we received a satisfactory amount of order from customers from both Stung Treng province and the other parts of Cambodia because they like the smell and taste of our fish sauce and believe in the quality of natural raw materials (freshwater fish) we used in our production. Actually, we can compete in the market if we improve our production a little bit more. Unfortunately, so far we could not meet some market demands on quality which requires our fish sauce not to have fungi within a year after production. Also, they need our fish sauce to upgrade its packaging because nice package is very important to show that our product is with quality and hygiene. If we could meet all these demands, we would have a lot of market opportunities and could make a significant income from this small enterprise for our members and the other villagers.”
I hope that through this project and with support from Global Giving and CRDT, our micro-enterprise will be upgraded in the near future, and I would like to thank very much to global giving donors for providing us with the hope to strengthen and sustain our enterprise. I wish you all good lucks and success in all your work.
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