Pot Sothey is 30 years old and looks like any other Cambodian villager. She sports a cheerful disposition and has a young child scampering around her while she talks to the other women villagers outside her house.
Her house is a typical stilted Khmer structure that looks no different from the others when it is set against the late afternoon sun. It sits on the edge of the village and looks out to the vast brown silted plains that have yet to swell with floodwater.
However, just about a year ago, it wasn’t such a peaceful picture. Soethey together with her young child, lived with16 people in a small house as her factory worker husband, based in Phnom Penh, could not yet afford to build one for the three of them.
There were daily unpleasant run-ins with relatives who were also walking on a tight rope from living in such close proximity with each other everyday.
A community-based officer from Love Cambodia saw that Sothey and her family could benefit from having a house of their own.
Sothey also signed up with the Cow Bank to supplement her husband’s income.
Today, not only does Sothey have a comfortable home, she has begun saving money through the Cow Bank.
WATER & SANITATION SERVICES
What do you do when your crops fail for a few years and you cannot afford to feed your family of six?
Lon Moa, a father of four, found himself in that situation a few years ago. As he knew no other trade, he was faced with mounting debt, no seeds for the next planting season and even clean water to drink. The family faced an uncertain future.
Their plight was highlighted to Love Cambodia, who found them living in extreme poverty and dependent on the charity of their neighbours to survive. The children were also malnourished and not able to go to school.
With Love Cambodia’s help, Lon Moa and his family have gotten back on their feet with the help of rice seeds from the rice bank. They also share a well with a motor pump built in front of their house, with their neighbours.
Today, his three sons are married and his youngest daughter who is 17 years old, works in Phnom Penh and sends money home regularly. Their dream is to set up a small sundry shop infront of their house to build up an alternative source of income for more financial stability.