O'Reang Ov Village in Cambodia
As part of our training needs assessment, we profile both villages and individuals to understand who they are and what their needs may be. Colette was just in Cambodia and gave us this profile of a small village. It'll give you an idea of what life is like for Good Return borrowers.
The main income generating activities are growing rice in the rainy season, chickens and buffalo. Most husbands leave the village to earn an income outside of the rice growing season. Most rice farmers invest heavily in their rice fields (labour and fertiliser) of around 2.5 million Riel (US$500 – $600). If they sell all their rice they will earn around 3 to 4 million Riel (US$700 – $750). Most only sell 50% of the rice as they keep 50% for family consumption. Sometimes families need to buy back rice if there is not enough food for their families.
Can you imagine working all year long and pouring all of your savings into something you won't even receive a profit on? There's only so much income you can earn from farming and raising animals when everyone else in your village is doing the same thing just to get by. This is where microfinance comes in. What if you had $100 extra to buy a sewing machine and you could earn a few more dollars a day? Or a rickshaw so that your husband didn't have to leave to work elsewhere? These are the kinds of opportunities which we hope we can provide in Cambodia.