2011′s Success Stories
Lo Thi Xoan, starting with a small loan for breeding pig
The first step to diversification: Lo Thi Xoan is one of the women from the Dien Bien province assisted by our local organization Chi Em.When she first heard about Chi Em, this 35 years old mother of two was already cultivating and selling coffee, rice and vegetables. She wanted to diversify the familyowned farm’s activities and start up livestock farming, but didn’t have the money for it.
Training to do better: With the 1,200,000 dhongs (€ 42) Chi Em granted her in February 2010, she bought four pigs, eighing 6 kilograms each. Even if three of them died next September from disease, the remaining pig today weighs around 60 kilograms , is worth 2,400,000 dhongs (€ 84) and is pregnant! Moreover, Lo Thi Xoan received training about hygiene, as well as disease prevention and treatment, in order to not suffer any further losses .
Next step - breeding fish: While Lo Thi Xoan waits for her first piglets to be born, she is working on other projects. She also plans to buy fertilizer for her coffee trees and to use the farm’s pond to breed fish. Before investing again, she must reimburse her initial loan first, but at least she already has 100,000 dhongs in the savings account she opened with Chi Em.She also wants to learn more skills to improve her cultivation and livestock farming methods.
KIEN an example of willpower
Carrying on without indulging in self-pity. These few words summarise the life of Kien, a deaf and mute single mother, aged 26 and a divorced from an arranged marriage.
Kien lives in a small village in the land-locked province of Dien Bien. Despite her disability, she battles every day to pull through on her own, working and educating her four-yearold daughter. In 2010, she built her own little wooden house, thanks to the aid given to her by her family and the government.
Two jobs, but insufficient income
Before receiving our help, Kien survived by cultivating her own rice paddy and sometimes those of others, for 60,000 dhongs (€2) per day, but this extra work was highly irregular.
Kien is hard-working and also makes brooms, fishing nets and baskets from rice. In one week, she makes 10 baskets, 10 brooms and 1 net, for a profit of 260,000 dhongs (€9).
And finally, one last job to make ends meet
Since June 2011, Kien has been receiving help from Anh Chi Em, our local partner MFI. A loan of 3,000,000 dhongs (€100) has helped her to buy five pigs for fattening. Our agricultural officer came to vaccinate the pigs for free and gave Kien valuable advice on how to rear her pigs successfully. In December Kien will sell her pigs at five times the original price. This opportunity to rear animals is a real step forward for Kien to gain financial independence. As a complementary project, she plans to produce craft goods, to be sold to the increasing number of tourists visiting the region.